Iraq’s central government and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) in the north of the country on 4 April reached a “temporary agreement” to resume some 500,000 b/d of oil exports via Turkey. The breakthrough comes after Ankara swiftly suspended pipeline flows from northern Iraq to its port of Ceyhan on the Mediterranean following a ruling largely in Baghdad’s favor by the Paris-based International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) on a nine year arbitration filed against Turkey for facilitating Iraqi Kurdistan’s independent oil exports (MEES, 31 March).

Iraqi government spokesperson Basim al-Awadi told state INA news agency on 4 April that the brokered agreement between Iraqi PM Mohammed al-Sudani and KRG PM Masrour Barzani encompasses “four main clauses” with Baghdad’s demand for a complete handover of all Iraqi oil sales at Ceyhan to state oil marketer Somo being the headline element of the deal. With KRG oil revenues now effectively flowing from Baghdad, this potentially gives the central government large sway over Kurdistan’s oil sector. (CONTINUED - 2370 WORDS)