The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) continues to fast-track development of its oil sector, despite the lack of a resolution to the oil dispute, which has cut the region’s crude exports to a trickle.

Talks between the Kurds and central government on 27 February aimed at ending the deadlock over Iraq’s 2013 budget resulted in failure, Reuters reported. The Kurds claim they are owed some ID4 trillion ($3.5bn) to cover costs for companies operating in the region and that they have not received their 17% entitlement of products from Iraqi refineries. But Baghdad, which rejects KRG oil contracts, has allocated just ID750bn ($645mn). It argues that in cutting its exports, the KRG has reneged on its commitments. And furthermore, the Kurds have benefitted from both illegal cross-border crude sales and from sales to KRG refineries, (CONTINUED - 516 WORDS)