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Iraq loses $5.5bn due to halt in oil exports through Turkiye

August 31, 2023 at 3:25 pm

An oil tanker carries oil to the Gwer Oil Refinery, which is one of the most important industrial facilities processing oil products, in Erbil, Iraq on August 6, 2023 [Ahsan Mohammed Ahmed Ahmed – Anadolu Agency]

Iraq and the Kurdistan Region have lost around $5.5 billion due to the halt of the region’s oil exports through Turkey’s Ceyhan port, an official told reporters on Tuesday.

Head of the Department of Foreign Relations of the Kurdistan Regional Government, Safeen Dizayee said Turkiye supports the resumption of oil exports from the Kurdistan region in northern Iraq, and the latter is very prepared in this regard.

“Baghdad officially says it is ready, but it has not taken any practical steps yet,” the official added, noting ongoing efforts to resume the flow of oil.

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Turkiye halted Iraq’s 450,000 barrels per day (bpd) of exports through the northern Iraq-Turkiye pipeline on 25 March after an arbitration ruling by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), Reuters reported.

Iraq filed for arbitration in 2014 with the Paris-based International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) over Turkiye’s role in facilitating oil exports from Iraqi Kurdistan without the consent of the federal government in Baghdad.

Iraq’s federal government says its state-owned marketed SOMO is the only party authorised to manage crude exports through Ceyhan.

Iraq said that by transporting and storing oil from Kurdistan and loading it on tankers in Ceyhan without Baghdad’s approval, Ankara and Turkish state energy company BOTAS violated provisions of an Iraq-Turkiye pipeline agreement signed in 1973.

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