Northern Iraqi oil not yet sold: Turkish Energy Minister Yıldız
TBILISI - Anadolu Agency
Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yıldız . AA PhotoNorthern Iraqi oil that is being stored at the Mediterranean port of Ceyhan has not yet been exported to international markets but could soon be sold off, Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yıldız has said.
“Oil in the region belongs to Iraq, and our Iraqi brothers will present the oil to the international market,” Yıldız said yesterday in Tbilisi, adding that Turkey’s role would merely be to transfer the oil when the Iraqis decide to sell.
“Some 2.2 million barrels of oil are currently stored [in Turkey’s Ceyhan Port] and 100,000 barrels of crude oil is flowing every day now. I think the storage will be [full] within three to four days. If Iraq [permits], we will transfer and sell their oil on international markets.”
The tanks at the Ceyhan port, located in the southern province of Adana, have a storage capacity of 2.5 million barrels of crude oil, which flows via the Kirkuk-Ceyhan Oil Pipeline.
Yıldız said Turkey’s oil-refining company, the Turkish Petroleum Refineries Corporation (TPAO), could buy crude oil from Iraq if necessary but that there was no need to do so currently.
Questioned about the privatization of Iraq’s oil pipelines, Yıldız said Turkey was concerned about the issue. “We will share details in the upcoming period.”
Iraq wants to privatize the oil sector in the country in its entirety, including the pipelines.
In November 2013, Turkish and Kurdish regional administration officials signed an agreement that would enable Kurdish oil to flow from Kirkuk to Ceyhan.