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Turkiye-Iraq crude oil pipeline to resume this week after six-month halt 

October 2, 2023 at 6:30 pm

Turkish Minister of Energy and Natural Resources Alparslan Bayraktar in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates on October 02, 2023 [Arif Akdoğan/Anadolu Agency]

Turkiye is set to restart operations on a crude oil pipeline from Iraq within a week, after it was suspended for around six months over disputes regarding exports and arbitration.

Speaking at the ADIPEC conference in Abu Dhabi today, Turkiye’s Energy Minister, Alparslan Bayraktar, announced that “Within this week, we will start operating the Iraq-Turkiye pipeline after resuming operations. It will be able to supply half a million barrels, almost, to global oil markets”.

In March, Iraq’s northern oil export route – which carries almost half a million barrels of crude per day contributes around 0.5 percent of global crude supply – was halted following the International Chamber of Commerce’s (ICC) arbitration ruling, ordering Turkiye to pay Iraq billions of dollars in damages for unauthorised exports between 2014 and 2018.

Turkiye started maintenance work on the pipeline while continuing to engage in a legal battle against the arbitration ruling but, due to the fact that the pipeline goes through a seismic zone and suffered damage from the devastating earthquakes in south-eastern Turkiye in February, Ankara agreed with Baghdad to wait until a maintenance assessment on it was completed before restarting oil flows.

Both countries are set to benefit from the resumption of the pipeline’s operations, particularly Iraq which – along with its northern Kurdistan Region – lost around $5.5 billion as a result of the six-month-long halt.

EXPLAINER: What is the Iraq-Turkiye oil pipeline dispute and who is on the hook?