Talks between Iraq’s central government and the semi-autonomous Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) have struck a positive tone in the last couple of weeks, with Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed al-Sudani embarking on a two-day visit to Erbil and Sulaymaniyah on 14 March. He received red carpet treatment by the leaders of the KRG’s two dominant parties, the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) and the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK).

Speaking at a press conference in Baghdad on 13 March after the Iraqi cabinet had approved the country’s much-awaited 2023 draft fiscal budget (MEES, 24 March), the PM said that while “the understanding with our [KRG] brothers took time,” a “comprehensive agreement on the outstanding problems” including articles pertaining to “[Kurdistan] oil exports and the method of management and supervision [by Baghdad]” was reached. (CONTINUED - 1599 WORDS)