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Kurdistan Oil & Gas Development

A collection of threads on topics that get updated regularly :
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Re: Kurdistan Oil & Gas Development

PostAuthor: Anthea » Tue Jan 23, 2024 12:41 am

TAQA sells Duhok oil field stake

Kurdistan - The United Arab Emirates-based TAQA on Monday said it is selling its stake in the Atrush oil field in Duhok province to ShaMaran Petroleum, completing its exit from Kurdistan as oil exports remain halted for ten months

“TAQA enters into definitive agreements with General Exploration Partners Inc. for the sale of its interest in the Atrush oil field in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq,” the company said in a bourse filing on the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange (ADX).

The stake will be acquired by ShaMaran Petroleum, a Canadian oil development and exploration company operating in the Kurdistan Region that previously held a 27.6 interest in the Atrush block. It will then sell 25 percent of the share to the US energy company HKN Energy.

“This transaction continues ShaMaran’s consolidation strategy in Kurdistan. We are acquiring TAQA’s 47.4% interest in Atrush and selling a 25% interest and operatorship to HKN IV,” ShaMaran’s President Garrett Soden said in a statement.

The transaction with HKN Energy is subject to approval by the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) which owns the remainder 25 percent of the shares, according to ShaMaran.

The Abu Dhabi National Energy Company, known as TAQA, is an energy and water company operating in 11 countries. It previously held a majority 47.4 percent share in Atrush and in July 2019, broke the Kurdistan Region’s record and registered a production of over one million barrels of oil.

Oil exports from the Kurdistan Region through the Iraq-Turkey pipeline have been halted since March after a Paris-based arbitration court ruled in favor of Baghdad against Ankara, saying the latter had breached a 1973 agreement by allowing Erbil to begin independent oil exports in 2014.

The halt in exports has caused the Iraqi and Kurdish government billions of dollars in losses.

Erbil and Baghdad have held numerous meetings since the ruling intended at taking measures to resume the exports but international oil companies (IOCs) operating in the Kurdistan Region have not been invited to most of the talks.

On Sunday, the KRG’s natural resources ministry invited IOCs in the Region to discuss progress in talks with the federal government on resuming oil exports.

Before the halt, around 400,000 barrels of oil a day were being exported by Erbil through Ankara, in addition to some 75,000 barrels of federally-controlled oil from Kirkuk province.

The loss in oil revenues, the KRG’s main source of income, has worsened the financial situation and left the government unable to pay its public sector without assistance from Baghdad.

https://www.rudaw.net/english/business/22012024
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Re: Kurdistan Oil & Gas Development

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Re: Kurdistan Oil & Gas Development

PostAuthor: Anthea » Tue Jan 23, 2024 12:44 am

KRG talks with Baghdad

The natural resources ministry of Kurdistan Government (KRG) has invited international oil companies working in the Region to meet on Wednesday to discuss progress in talks with the federal government about resuming oil exports, Rudaw has learned

Erbil and Baghdad have held numerous meetings since a ruling by a Paris-based arbitration court last March suspended the flow of Kurdish oil to international markets. International Oil Companies (IOCs) operating in the Kurdistan Region have not been invited to most of the talks.

“The purpose of the meeting is to update you regarding the progress of the negotiations with the Federal Government of Iraq in matters that concern you and other IOC partners. The amendments of the 2023 budget law and the subject of compensation for the IOC’s entitlements will be the main topics of the discussion. We will welcome your insights and suggestions during these discussions,” read an email sent to the IOCs by the ministry and which Rudaw English has seen.

Myles Caggins, spokesperson for the Association of the Petroleum Industry of Kurdistan (APIKUR), an umbrella group of oil companies operating in the Kurdistan Region, confirmed to Rudaw English that the companies are looking forward to the discussion.

“APIKUR member companies look forward to continued progress and discussions to resume full oil production and exports to global markets,” he said.

In December, APIKUR said that it had been excluded from negotiations between the KRG and Baghdad. “APIKUR member companies - which represent the majority of the oil produced by IOCs in Kurdistan - have neither been included in these meetings nor been invited to participate in any future meetings between the KRG and GoI [Government of Iraq],” it stated.

Exports of the Kurdistan Region’s oil through the Iraq-Turkey pipeline have been halted since March 23 when the Paris-based arbitration court ruled in favor of Baghdad against Ankara, saying Turkey had breached a 1973 agreement by allowing Erbil to begin independent oil exports in 2014.

Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia’ al-Sudani told Bloomberg last week that the main obstacle before the resumption of the oil exports is that the OICs “have an issue with the cost of producing barrels.”

Before the halt, around 400,000 barrels a day were being exported by Erbil through Ankara, in addition to some 75,000 barrels of Kirkuk’s oil.

The loss in oil revenues, the KRG’s main source of income, has worsened the financial situation and left the government unable to pay its public sector without assistance from Baghdad.

https://www.rudaw.net/english/kurdistan/210120245
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Re: Kurdistan Oil & Gas Development

PostAuthor: Anthea » Wed Jan 24, 2024 8:18 pm

Oil Companies Discuss Budget

The Kurdistan Government's (KRG) negotiating delegation held discussions with representatives from oil and gas companies to discuss key issues on the budget, oil law, and the resumption of oil exports from the Region

Peshawa Hawramany, the spokesperson for the KRG, provided insights into the meeting, stating, "The meeting reaffirmed the intention of the Kurdistan Regional Government for a radical solution and pointed out that the Kurdistan Regional Government has done what was on the negotiations to reach an agreement and a solution."

The discussions centered on the latest developments in the ongoing talks between Erbil and Baghdad, specifically addressing critical aspects of the budget and oil-related matters. The KRG's commitment to seeking a comprehensive solution was emphasized during the meeting, reflecting its proactive engagement in negotiations to achieve a mutually beneficial agreement.

A significant part of the dialogue was focused on the resumption of oil exports from the Kurdistan Region. The representatives of the oil and gas companies participated in deliberations that underscored the necessity for a collective solution and a shared understanding among all parties involved. Central to this is reaching a consensus on the costs associated with the production and transportation of oil.

In March 2023, the International Chamber of Commerce in Paris issued a verdict against the independent crude oil exports of the Kurdistan Region through Turkey, based on which the federal government remains the only party in charge of oil exports through Turkey's Ceyhan port.

Since then, the KRG has been in continuous negotiations with the federal government in recent months, and the agreement on budget and oil and gas is a positive development in their relationship.

https://www.basnews.com/en/babat/837452
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Re: Kurdistan Oil & Gas Development

PostAuthor: Anthea » Fri Jan 26, 2024 3:30 am

Khor Mor gas field attacked

Khor Mor gas field in Sulaimani province was attacked late on Thursday, a local official told Rudaw. No casualties have been reported

A security source told Rudaw’s reporter Peshawa Bakhtyar that the Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG) plants of Khor Mor, a key gas field operated by the UAE-based Dana Gas in Chamchamal town, Sulaimani province.

No casualties have been reported among the staff working in the field.

Ambulances and fire fighting units were dispatched to the location of the attack, a local official told Rudaw.

It remains unclear whether the attack was carried out with drones or rockets, according to the official.

In August, the gas field was attacked with two Katyusha rockets. A local official then told Rudaw that the rockets were fired from Tuz Khurmatu district, striking a location near to the place where the company's employees were resting.

This comes as the Kurdistan Region is under barrages of drone attacks by Iran-backed militias targeting military bases housing US troops.

Iran-backed militia groups have claimed responsibility for the majority of drone strikes, in retaliation to Washington’s support for Israel in its war against the Gaza Strip.

Khor Mor field produces 452 million standard cubic feet of gas per day, according to Dana Gas.

https://www.rudaw.net/english/kurdistan/250120242
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Re: Kurdistan Oil & Gas Development

PostAuthor: Anthea » Mon Jan 29, 2024 9:49 pm

Call U.S. Congress to help resume oil exports
By Wladimir van Wilgenburg

ERBIL (Kurdistan24) – The Association of the Petroleum Industry of Kurdistan (APIKUR) on Monday in a letter appealed to the United States Congress to encourage Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia' al-Sudani to resolve the oil production and export of Kurdish crude oil during his upcoming U.S. visit

The export of Kurdish oil has been halted since March 25 after Iraq claimed victory against Turkey, the importer of the oil, at a Paris-based international court for allowing the Kurdistan Region to independently export petroleum.

The APIKUR underlined that the export halt, “affecting over 400,000 barrels of oil per day, has lasted more than 10 months and is severely impacting the region's economy and stability at a time when regional tensions are already heightened.”

In the letter to Michael McCaul, Chairman United States House Committee on Foreign Affairs and Gregory Meeks, Ranking Member United States House Committee on Foreign Affairs, the APIKUR requested their immediate assistance to persuade the Iraqi Government to resume oil exports.

“The White House has extended an invitation for the Federal Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia Al Sudani to visit. We ask that you take this opportunity to impress on the Iraqi PM that GoI [Government of Iraq] must allow U.S. oil companies, and all APIKUR members, to freely produce and export their oil to the global markets,” the APIKUR said in the letter.

Moreover, the APIKUR said that Baghdad should also fully implement the Iraqi budget for the Kurdistan Region “which is essential for western and American companies to resume operations, as well as payment surety for past and future oil exports in accordance with their contractual rights.”

The association's statement continued, “The halt of crude oil exports from the region, now lasting over 10 months, coupled with the unresolved Federal Budget issues by the GoI, continue to threaten the fiscal stability and autonomous status of the KRI—a region that has been a steadfast security ally of the United States in the Middle East.

“The Iraqi Prime Minister should demonstrate that he is committed to leading his government to deliver a mutually beneficial solution that will no longer economically strangle the Kurdistan Region of Iraq,” said Myles B. Caggins III, APIKUR spokesman, said in the press release received by Kurdistan24.

“This solution includes resumption of oil exports from the Kurdistan Region into the international markets with payment and contractual certainty for western and American companies to resume operations. The export of oil is the foundation of Iraq’s economy, and all Iraqis will benefit when full production and global sales resume from the Kurdistan Region.”

The APIKUR was founded in 2023 and includes eight international oil and gas companies operating in the Kurdistan Region, including three U.S. owned companies. APIKUR member companies have so far invested over $10 billion in the Kurdistan Region.

“We remain committed to Kurdistan, despite the recent ballistic missile attacks and increased threats from Iranian-backed militia groups throughout Iraq. It is imperative that we resume full oil production and recommence oil exports from Kurdistan to create economic stability in the region as a bulwark against destructive and destabilizing influences from external actors,” Nicholas W. Atencio, APIKUR Secretary General wrote in the letter.

https://www.kurdistan24.net/en/story/33 ... il-exports
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Re: Kurdistan Oil & Gas Development

PostAuthor: Anthea » Tue Jan 30, 2024 7:56 pm

Resolve Kurdish oil exports crisis

Oil producers in Kurdistan on Monday called on the United States Congress to take immediate action to help lift the halt on the Region’s oil exports

Exports of the Kurdistan Region’s oil through the Iraq-Turkey pipeline have been halted since March 23 when the Paris-based arbitration court ruled in favor of Baghdad against Ankara, stating Turkey had breached a 1973 agreement by allowing Erbil to begin independent oil exports in 2014.

In a letter addressed to the US Congress which was seen by Rudaw English, the Association of the Petroleum Industry of Kurdistan (APIKUR) requested “immediate assistance to persuade the Federal Government of Iraq (GOI) to promptly resolve issues that have resulted in the halt of greater than 400,000 barrels a day of crude oil from the KRI [Kurdistan Region] to global markets.”

The oil association noted that the halt on oil exports has put at risk both US and international investments in the Kurdistan Region which total over $10 billion.

In September, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken extended an invitation from US President Joe Biden to Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia’ al-Sudani to visit the White House. APIKUR called on the US Congress to use the visit to persuade “the Iraqi PM that GoI must allow U.S. oil companies, and all APIKUR members, to freely produce and export their oil to the global markets.”

The Iraqi government must resolve two issues, namely “the full implementation of the Iraqi budget for the Kurdistan Region which is essential for western and American companies to resume operations, as well as payment surety for past and future oil exports in accordance with their contractual rights,” according to APIKUR.

“The Iraqi Prime Minister should demonstrate that he is committed to leading his government to deliver a mutually beneficial solution that will no longer economically strangle the Kurdistan Region of Iraq,” said Myles B. Caggins III, APIKUR spokesman.

Erbil and Baghdad have had multiple rounds of talks about restarting the exports. Kurdistan Region President Nechirvan Barzani in November said the problem now is technical rather than political.

Following rounds of meetings with Iraqi government officials and political leaders earlier this month, Barzani said that Erbil and Baghdad were “on the right path” to solving the problem of the Kurdistan Region’s stalled oil exports.

“I cannot say when, but I think we are on the right path to solve the [oil exports] issue,” Barzani said.

PM Sudani told Bloomberg earlier this month that the main obstacle hindering the resumption of oil exports is that the International Oil Companies (IOCs) “have an issue with the cost of producing barrels.”

On Wednesday, the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) met with IOCs to discuss progress in talks with the federal government about resuming oil exports.

Before the halt, around 400,000 barrels a day were being exported by Erbil through Ankara, in addition to some 75,000 barrels of Kirkuk’s oil.

The loss in oil revenues, the KRG’s main source of income, has worsened the financial situation and left the government unable to pay its public sector without assistance from Baghdad.

https://www.rudaw.net/english/kurdistan/30012024
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Re: Kurdistan Oil & Gas Development

PostAuthor: Anthea » Tue Feb 20, 2024 10:36 am

Baghdad must resume Kurdistan’s oil export

ERBIL (Kurdistan24) - Announced on Monday, Head of the Kurdistan Government's (KRG) Department of Foreign Relations, Minister Safeen Dizayee announced that in order to resume the Kurdistan's oil export, the ball is in Baghdad’s court, and that Turkey has formally informed of its readiness to resume the procedures

Minister Safeen Dizayee explained in an announcement to the media that during both Munich Security Conference and Dubai COP23, “Kurdistan Region’s President as well as the Prime Minister of Kurdistan Region had rigorous meetings with the heads of all the participating states, and they discussed the existing security situation and events in the Middle East.”

He noted that having discussions over the issues between Erbil and Baghdad and finding lasting solutions were the main topics for both the President and the Prime Minister of Kurdistan Region.

“Kurdistan Region is one of the main characters in maintaining the peace and stability of the region,” he added.

Regarding the resumption of Kurdistan Region’s oil export, Minister Dizayee remarked that Turkey has shown its readiness to resume the procedures of the export of oil and that all the technical issues have been fixed, such as the pipeline.

“Now it is up to Baghdad to make the decision to resume the export,” he emphasized.

He further clarified that the remaining issue between Baghdad and Ankara results from the Paris court ruling and this remains an issue that they have to resolve among each other. As it stands, whereas the estimates of economic loss to the Kurdistan region reach ten billion dollars, Iraq is asking for a billion and half Dollars as compensation from Turkey.

Additionally, Minister Dizayee reaffirmed the importance of continuing talks to resolve the outstanding issues between Kurdistan Region and Baghdad as well as the resumption of oil export.

The export of Kurdish oil has been halted since March 25 after Iraq claimed victory against Turkey at a Paris-based international court for allowing independent Kurdish oil exports.

https://www.kurdistan24.net/en/story/34 ... ister-Head
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Re: Kurdistan Oil & Gas Development

PostAuthor: Anthea » Sun Mar 10, 2024 11:34 pm

Iraqi government LIES about oil resumption

ERBIL (Kurdistan24) – Myles B. Caggins III, the spokesperson for the Association of Petroleum Industry of Kurdistan (APIKUR), on Sunday told Kurdistan24 that “the central government of Iraq is playing games and they are making false statements in the media about the status of the resumption of exports of oil.”

“Last week in Washington, D.C. I met with Prime Minister Masrour Barzani and he announced that there have been 11 billion US dollars lost since the pipeline has been closed,” the spokesperson said.

He also revealed that the oil companies from APIKUR are ready to resume “full production and exports.”

"Iran is now exporting two million barrels of oil per day... The Kurdistan region was exporting 450,000 barrels per day through the Iraq-Turkey pipeline. That oil would go on global markets. Now Iran is filling that space with 2 million barrels per day and Iran oil is sanctioned and they're selling oil to China and North Korea and we need to have unsanctioned good oil from Kurdistan region going into the world markets,” he added while stressing, “Iraq and the central government should also want to have strong energy production in Kurdistan region because all of Iraq benefits when Kurdistan region is strong.”

Meanwhile, the APIKUR spokesperson underlined that if Iraqi Mohammed Shia' Al Sudani visits Washington, D.C. he needs to have “a deal with Erbil for two things one there needs to be a budget deal… the second thing is there needs to be an agreement between Baghdad or Erbil and international oil companies for the full production and export of oil.”

https://www.kurdistan24.net/en/story/34 ... PIKUR-spox
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Re: Kurdistan Oil & Gas Development

PostAuthor: Anthea » Fri Mar 15, 2024 1:33 am

Oil Exports to Turkey

The repairs on the Iraq-Turkey oil pipeline were successfully concluded on Wednesday, following the federal government directives, oil exports from the Kirkuk oilfields to the Turkish port of Ceyhan will resume

The North Oil Company (NOC) undertook extensive efforts to rebuild the pipeline after it was destroyed by the Islamic State (ISIS) militants, focusing on areas spanning Nineveh, Salah Al-Din, and Kirkuk provinces. Over recent months, damaged sections were replaced and repairs completed, rendering the pipeline operational once again.

The pipeline is now poised to transport crude oil as per the specifications outlined by the Iraqi Ministry of Oil, facilitating the resumption of exports from Kirkuk's oilfields to Turkey's Ceyhan port. In early October 2023, Turkish Energy and Natural Resources Minister Alparslan Bayraktar confirmed the readiness of the pipeline for operation, signaling Ankara's readiness to receive oil shipments.

Turkey halted oil flows through the Kurdistan Region in March 2023 following an ICC ruling that mandated Ankara to compensate Baghdad with $1.5 billion for unauthorized oil exports spanning 2014 to 2018. Prior to the pipeline's closure, the Kurdistan region of Iraq exported approximately 450,000 barrels of crude oil daily through this route. Ankara subsequently initiated maintenance work on the pipeline, which plays a crucial role in transporting around 0.5 percent of global oil supplies.

https://www.basnews.com/en/babat/842494
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Re: Kurdistan Oil & Gas Development

PostAuthor: Anthea » Fri Mar 22, 2024 9:04 pm

Talks on KRG Oil Exports

Iraq and Turkey have initiated discussions to resume oil exports from the Kurdistan Region through the Turkish port of Ceyhan, a member of the Iraqi parliament's oil and natural resources committee said on Friday

Bassem Ngish confirmed that talks between Iraq and Turkey have resumed regarding the export of oil from the Kurdistan Region, underscoring Iraq's vested interest in resolving the issue in collaboration with Ankara.

"The ongoing discussions between Baghdad and Ankara aim to address the longstanding disputes concerning oil exports through the port of Ceyhan and related contractual matters," Ngish elaborated.

The focal point of contention has been the export of oil from the Kurdistan Region through the Turkish port. However, Ngish indicated that these issues are now being deliberated upon in the discussions between the Iraqi government and Turkish authorities.

In March 2023, Turkey discontinued the oil export route from the Kurdistan Region as a response to an arbitration judgment issued by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) based in France. This ruling mandated Ankara to provide compensation to Baghdad for what was termed as "unauthorized oil exports" from the Kurdistan Region during the period from 2014 to 2018.

https://www.basnews.com/en/babat/843299
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Re: Kurdistan Oil & Gas Development

PostAuthor: Anthea » Fri Mar 22, 2024 9:30 pm

ex-PM opposes KRG’s independent oil exports

Haider al-Abadi, a former prime minister of Iraq whose cabinet’s legal case in a Paris court ended Kurdistan Region’s independent oil exports, told Rudaw on Sunday that he stands by his strict belief that Erbil should export its oil through Baghdad

“This is Iraqi wealth,” said Abadi, adding that all Kurdistan Region’s oil should be exported through Iraq’s State Oil Marketing Organization (SOMO).

Turkey stopped the flow of Kurdish oil through the Iraq-Turkey pipeline after a Paris-based arbitration court last March ordered Ankara to pay $1.5 billion in damages to Baghdad for allowing Kurdish authorities to independently export oil between 2014 and 2018 in breach of a 1973 pipeline agreement. Oil exports have yet to resume despite talks between the Iraqi, Turkish, and Kurdish governments.

Abadi, who served as prime minister of Iraq between 2014 and 2018, told Rudaw’s Dildar Harki on Sunday that his cabinet filed the lawsuit in order to pressure Erbil and Ankara to make an agreement with Baghdad.

“Frankly speaking, our goal was to pressure brothers in the Kurdistan Region and Turkey to reach an agreement [with us] because that was a wrong path. We are talking about Iraqi oil, which belongs to all Iraqis. But they traded with it as per an agreement whose details were not known to us,” the former prime minister said.

“We did not know what the agreement between the Region and Turkey included. We wanted to know because it is our right,” he said, adding that he still wants to see details of the agreement between Ankara and Erbil made public.

Though it was his government that filed the case and won, Abadi said this was not the ending he had wanted.

“Ultimately, we reached the end without reaching an understanding and what we feared happened. If we had reached an agreement before the court ruling, it would be in the interests of all of us, but we did not due to a sort of stubbornness and the understanding that this would be considered a compromise to the opposite side,” he stated.

Before the halt, Erbil was exporting around 400,000 barrels a day through Turkey, in addition to some 75,000 barrels of Kirkuk’s oil.

The loss in billions of dollars of oil revenue, the main source of income for the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), has worsened the financial situation and left the government unable to pay its public sector without assistance from Baghdad.

Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia’ al-Sudani told Bloomberg in January that the main obstacle before the resumption of the exports is a disagreement with international oil companies about production costs.

Oil producers have asked the White House to pressure Sudani into resuming the exports when the prime minister meets with United States President Joe Biden in Washington on April 15.

Abadi said that the Iraqi budget was also affected by the suspension of oil exports and that paying the salaries of the KRG’s civil service is another burden on the federal government.

KRG salaries

Erbil and Baghdad have been at odds over the Kurdish government’s share of the federal budget for years. Irregular delivery of funds from Baghdad has left the KRG in dire financial straits for over a decade.

Erbil has made only one salary payment to its civil servants since October last year. It has also refused to receive a partial payment from the Iraqi government to cover February’s payroll, demanding the full amount instead.

“I believe that the people [of Kurdistan] are innocent. They should not pay the price when the political leaders fail to reach an agreement. The people should not be punished. I believe that it is not fair for the people to be punished as a result of their political leaders’ attitudes and decisions,” the former prime minister told Rudaw.

Financial disputes between Erbil and Baghdad worsened during Abadi’s time in office as the country was fighting the Islamic State (ISIS), oil prices dropped dramatically, and Baghdad was furious at the Region for its independent oil exports. It was also during his cabinet that the Kurdish administration held an independence referendum in the Kurdistan Region and disputed territories like Kirkuk. In a response to the plebiscite, Baghdad forced Peshmerga fighters out of the disputed areas and imposed an international embargo on Erbil.

Abadi said that the current prime minister is “serious” about resolving its financial disputes with the Kurdistan Region, but the budget law prevents him from doing so.

Last June, Iraq passed a three-year budget of which the Kurdistan Region's share is 12.6 percent. Baghdad has claimed it has fully implemented its financial obligations to the KRG, including through loans to assist Erbil in paying the salaries of its civil servants. The law obliges the Region to hand over its oil to the federal government but this had not taken place.

Iraq’s Supreme Federal Court last month ordered the KRG to submit a breakdown of the monthly budget for its payroll to the federal finance ministry so that Baghdad could start paying the Region’s share from the federal budget. The ruling requires the Kurdish government to open accounts for its employees at state-owned banks - a process dubbed “localization” by Baghdad.

Earlier this month, the Iraqi finance ministry announced that it had begun paying the Kurdistan Region’s civil servant salaries for the month of February while noting that the payment of salaries for March “will take place once the Region meets the salary settlement requirements,” referring to the bank accounts.

The federal court has ruled that the payment of the Region’s civil servants’ salaries by Baghdad should continue in cash until the localization process is complete.

The Iraqi government has so far provided around 600 million dinars for February while the KRG says it needs more than 900 million dinars to be able to distribute salaries.

Abadi said that when he was the prime minister in 2017 and 2018 he and the KRG worked on treating all employees of the country equally, but the attempt failed. He added that a decision should be made as to whether the KRG’s employees are considered the civil servants of the federal government or those of the Region, arguing that in federal countries like Iraq all employees should be treated as federal. He used the US as an example where government employees across all 50 states are paid by the federal government.

“If they are considered as local employees then they [the KRG] are responsible for them because they have their own income,” he noted.

Withdrawal of coalition troops

A US-led global coalition was formed in 2014 to combat ISIS when the group took control of swathes of Iraqi and Syrian land. ISIS was declared territorially defeated in Iraq in 2017, but the threat remains as the group continues to carry out hit-and-run attacks.

Pro-Iran armed groups, however, have frequently asked for the withdrawal of US troops from the country.

In January 2020, angry over the US killing of Iran’s Qasem Soleimani and Iraqi militia leader Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the Iraqi parliament passed a non-binding resolution to expel all foreign forces.

Calls for the expulsion of American troops were renewed when the US hit several militia bases in Iraq late last year and early this year, blaming them for dozens of drone and rocket attacks on its troops. The pro-Iran groups said their attacks were in response to Washington's support for Israel in its war with Hamas in Gaza Strip.

With growing calls in Iraq for the expulsion of the Americans, in late January, the US and Iraq began discussions about the future of the global coalition’s mission against ISIS.

Abadi told Rudaw that American troops are in the country on the invitation of Baghdad, therefore they should be asked politely to leave or both sides should seek a new mechanism if they need to remain.

“ISIS now does not control Iraqi territory, although terrorism is still a challenge, but the situation is different, so we must change our mechanisms. It is not suitable to continue with the same mechanisms, but it is also wrong to tell them to leave and expel them,” he said.

“In the end, you sought help from them, and they came at the request of the Iraqi government. Therefore, the Iraqi government must sit down and decide what is good, how many of these forces should remain, and what we want from these forces,” he added.

https://www.rudaw.net/english/middleeast/iraq/220320242
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Re: Kurdistan Oil & Gas Development

PostAuthor: Anthea » Tue Mar 26, 2024 12:10 pm

Kurdistan pushes to restart oil exports

ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) - The Ministry of Natural Resources of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) issued a statement on Tuesday, March 26, regarding the KRG’s efforts for resumption of oil exports

"The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) and the Iraqi Prime Minister have initiated efforts to resume oil exports," a spokesperson stated.

According to the statement, the KRG had already agreed with the federal government in April 2023 to resume oil exports; however, despite this agreement, exports have not resumed. The situation was further complicated by unfair provisions of the budget law.

"The KRG's oil industry was established through foreign investment without using funds from the country's budget. However, the budget law treats it similarly to the Iraqi oil industry, which operates on billions of dollars. The allocated oil amount to the Kurdistan Region does not correspond to the actual production and transportation costs," it added.

The statement also highlighted that the KRG has handed over more than 11 million barrels of oil to the federal government in good faith, “but has not received any payments to fulfill the financial entitlements of oil-producing companies.”

“The Kurdistan Region's oil accounted for only 10 percent of Iraq's oil exports, and the revenue from this oil was only a part of the financial entitlements of the Kurdistan Region's people in the country's general budget. There is a severe financial crisis, delaying salary payments to KRG employees. Previously, salaries were paid promptly using oil revenues," the statement explained.

"Prime Minister Masrour Barzani and Prime Minister Mohammed Shia al-Sudani have initiated efforts to resume oil exports to resolve the issue, addressing the obstacles and problems hindering the resumption of oil exports from the Kurdistan Region," the statement concluded.

The export of Kurdish oil has been halted since March 25 after Iraq claimed victory against Turkey at a Paris-based international court for allowing independent Kurdish oil exports.

https://www.kurdistan24.net/en/story/34 ... ial-strain
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Re: Kurdistan Oil & Gas Development

PostAuthor: Anthea » Sat Apr 06, 2024 7:02 pm

Repaired Kirkuk-Turkey pipeline

Iraq’s oil ministry has begun testing a repaired pipeline that will carry oil from Kirkuk to Turkey’s Ceyhan port, a source within the ministry told Rudaw on Friday

Baghdad conducted oil pumping trials this week, through three compressor stations in Kirkuk, Beiji and Mosul, a ministry source told Rudaw’s Hemin Baban Rahim on the condition of anonymity.

One third of the pipeline is inside Iraq and Kurdistan Region, and the remaining passes through Turkish territory to Ceyhan port where the oil is loaded into ships.

The pipeline has been out of commission since it was damaged by the Islamic State (ISIS) when the group captured Mosul in 2014.

Repairs are now finished and the pipeline passed the first trial run without any problems, the source said. A second test will be done before exports resume.

Iraq has been repairing its oil infrastructure damaged during the war with ISIS. In February, Prime Minister Mohammed Shia’ al-Sudani presided over the reopening of the country’s largest oil refinery in Baiji, nearly a decade after it stopped operations.

With the refinery now back online, “we are on track to meet the country's total oil derivatives needs by mid-next year, potentially even surpassing this goal ahead of schedule,” Sudani said.

Iraq is one of the world’s top oil producers, pumping out some four million barrels per day according to Sudani. However, it still imports gas and refined products, especially from its neighbor Iran.

“Halting oil derivative imports will save billions of dollars,” Sudani said, “that can be reallocated to other public services and economic sectors, marking significant reform.”

Sudani’s government has eyed self-sufficiency in several energy-related sectors, especially oil and gas.

Last month, Sudani announced that Iraq will be self-sufficient with respect to oil derivatives within two months and that will lead to over $3 billion annually in savings when it ends imports.

Oil is Iraq’s main source of income, relied on to cover government costs and pay civil servant salaries. The country pocketed $97.5 billion from oil sales in 2023, a significant decline from 2022’s record-setting $115 billion.

https://www.rudaw.net/english/middleeast/iraq/050420241
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Re: Kurdistan Oil & Gas Development

PostAuthor: Anthea » Sat Apr 13, 2024 7:50 pm

Kick-start to Kurdish oil exports

Next week’s meeting between United States President Joe Biden and Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia’ al-Sudani is a “key opportunity” for talks about resuming Kurdistan Region’s oil exports, an association of oil producers said on Friday

The April 15 meeting in the White House will be “an opportunity to reach agreement on oil production and exports through the Iraq-Türkiye pipeline, thus removing a key barrier to foreign direct investment in Iraq,” the Association of the Petroleum Industry of Kurdistan (APIKUR) said in a statement, adding that it is “optimistic that the high-level meeting between Al-Sudani and Biden will create urgency among all stakeholders to swiftly resolve issues and restore full production and exports from Iraq’s Kurdistan Region.”

Oil exports from the Kurdistan Region through the Iraq-Turkey pipeline have been halted since March 2023 after a Paris-based arbitration court ruled in Baghdad’s favor that Ankara had breached a 1973 pipeline agreement by allowing Erbil to begin independent exports in 2014.

Despite several talks between Kurdish, Iraqi, and Turkish officials, the exports have yet to resume and many international oil companies have suspended production.

Before the halt, around 400,000 barrels a day were being exported by Erbil, in addition to some 75,000 barrels of Kirkuk’s oil.

“The lack of agreement to resume exports has cost Iraq more than $14.5 billion in lost export revenues as well as the loss of significant employment and investment opportunities to the people of Iraq, the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), the Federal Government of Iraq (GoI), and International Oil Companies (IOCs),” according to APIKUR.

APIKUR also revealed that the US imported more than half a million barrels of oil from Iraq in March and “none of this oil was produced in Kurdistan region, despite the U.S. Government having directly invested $300 million for KRI’s oil and gas sector development.”

https://www.rudaw.net/english/business/12042024
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Re: Kurdistan Oil & Gas Development

PostAuthor: Anthea » Fri Apr 19, 2024 1:39 am

Iraq, Kurdistan Discuss Oil Exports

Iraqi Oil Minister Hayyan Abdul Ghani announced on Thursday that discussions are underway between the federal government and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) to resume oil exports

Ghani stated that oil production in Kurdistan currently stands between 375,000 to 400,000 barrels per day, aligning with Iraq's budget. Ghani emphasized, stating, "We will resume production and export of oil from the fields in the Kurdistan Region.” The remaining issues, according to the minister, circulate around production and transportation costs.

Additionally, he mentioned a recent contract signed by the Ministry of Electricity with a gas investment firm in Kurdistan, aimed at facilitating the transport of 100 million cubic feet of natural gas. He stated that using Kurdistan’s natural gas for energy production costs 30% less than imported gas from Iran.

The suspension of oil exports from Kurdistan via the Iraq-Turkey pipeline for a year has led to significant revenue losses for Iraq, estimated at $12 billion, along with a $400 million downturn in investments by APIKUR member companies.

Despite the readiness of Turkey and Kurdistan, Iraq has yet to finalize its preparations to resume oil exports. APIKUR stressed the importance of expediting the resumption of exports and maintaining previously agreed terms.

https://www.basnews.com/en/babat/845914
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