KRG oil revenues to cumulate in US bank
ARBIL - Anadolu Agency
Despite Turkish government’s desire to collect Kurdish oil money in Halkbank, central and regional Iraqi government has agreed to save in an Us bank. AFP photoRevenues from Kurdish oil, which is to be exported to world markets via Turkey, will be deposited in a New York-based bank account of the Development Fund of Iraq (DFI), sources have said.
Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki and Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani reached a resolution in Baghdad over their differences on oil exports on Dec. 25, Anadolu Agency reported.
The deal stipulates that oil revenues from Kurdish-controlled regions will go to the DFI account which was created at JPMorgan Chase in New York in 2003 at the request of the United Nations, instead of Turkish state-owned lender Halkbank.
Barzani broached the issue of depositing the oil money in a U.S. lender during a visit to Ankara at the end of November.
According to a statement from the office of al-Maliki’s deputy for energy, Hussein Shahristani, both sides agreed to export Kurdish oil through the State Organization for Marketing of Oil (SOMO), the company responsible for marketing Iraq’s oil.
Meanwhile, al-Maliki’s media adviser, Ali Musawi, said the two parties had reached a consensus on establishing a committee for the resolution of problems between the two governments and that the committee would convene at the end of 2014 to end the issues.
The revenues will later be distributed to the relevant parties via Iraq’s central budget, the statement said.
Hasan Özmen, a parliament for Diyala province, told Anadolu Agency that the revenue from the oil which is to be exported via Turkey through a newly finished pipeline would also be deposited in the DFI account.
Özmen said the account was originally established to ensure the equal distribution of revenues.
Turkey recently signed an agreement with the KRG for the establishment of a separate 300,000-barrel capacity pipeline.
On Dec. 23, Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yıldız said test flows for northern Iraqi oil had been completed up to Ceyhan, a coastal district in the Mediterranean province of Adana, adding that the oil would begin to flow after the tests.
Until recently, Baghdad had expressed its explicit opposition to the autonomous Kurdish region’s direct oil deals with foreign companies and the export of Kurdish oil and gas to Turkey.