Iraqi Kurdistan begins oil exports to
Kurdistan starts trucking
exports of oil to Turkey
July 8, 2012
Kurdistan region 'Iraq', — Iraqi Kurdistan has begun
sending oil produced in its Kurdish autonomous
region out of the country without the express
permission of the central government in Baghdad, an
official said on Sunday, AFP reported.
The central government in Baghdad, meanwhile,
insisted that it reserved the sole right to export
oil, which accounts for the lion's share of the
country's income and is at the centre of a dispute
between the capital and Kurdistan.
The export of oil will be via tankers for now until
the government builds an export pipeline, AK News
reported. Two sources said that trucks had begun
transporting crude oil from Kurdistan over the
border to Turkey on Thursday, reported the
Telegraph. Erbil and Ankara agreed to build an
export pipeline, which could be operational in 2013
to transport oil to Turkey.
Turkish Prime Minister Receb Taib Erdogan said in
Brazil: "Iraq’s government halted exporting oil
derivatives and fuel to the Kurdistan Region. Thus
they asked for fuel and we agreed.
"We started exporting limited quantities of crude
oil to Turkey a few days ago," Seerwan Abubaqr, an
adviser to the Kurdistan government's natural
resources ministry, told AFP.
He said the crude was being exported to Turkey so it
could be refined into various products before being
brought back to Kurdistan.
"If we need to, we will export oil to Iran," Abubaqr
added. "We will continue exports of crude oil until
the central government provides the region with oil
"The central government has pushed us to do this."
Kurdish officials say the central government has
barred the dispatch of petroleum products to the
northern region, but the oil ministry in Baghdad has
persistently denied those allegations.
"Nobody has the right to export oil, gas, or oil
products to foreign countries," said Faisal
Abdullah, spokesman for Hussein al-Shahristani,
deputy premier responsible for energy affairs.
"Only the oil ministry of the government in Baghdad
has the right to export oil or oil products."
A dispute over oil between Baghdad and the Kurdish
government in Erbil has worsened in recent months,
with Kurdistan looking to ramp up oil production and
and the region has also cut off oil exports to Iraq
in a payment row.
Erbil has signed dozens of contracts with foreign
oil firms aimed at boosting its oil sector in recent
year, but the central government, which says all oil
contracts must go through Baghdad and regards any
that do not as illegal, has strenuously opposed such
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