Turkey plays ‘key role’ in transferring Iraqi Kurdish oil
ANKARA - Anadolu Agency
AA photoTurkey has played a key role in transferring Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) oil to the international market, Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yıldız said on Aug. 15.
“The oil transfer couldn’t have materialized if Turkey was not involved because the central government in Baghdad did not allow it,” Yıldız said, speaking to visiting reporters from the Iraqi Kurdish region in Ankara.
Talking about the complicated relations between the KRG, the central Iraqi government, and Turkey, Yıldız said: “We have important relations, agreements, contracts with them.”
Yıldız also spoke about the Iraq-Turkey Pipeline (ITP), which carried oil for 40 years from Iraq to international markets via Turkey.
“I hope it will operate for more than 140 years, and the income belongs to our Iraqi brothers. According to Iraqi law, the income of oil should be shared: 17 percent for the KRG and 83 percent for other parts of Iraq. We do not interfere with this arrangement,” he said.
At the moment, both the KRG and the central government in Baghdad are importing refined oil from Turkey via the Kirkuk-Ceyhan oil pipeline.
There are a total of 58 oil wells in the Kurdish region of northern Iraq, 28 in Sulaymaniyah and 30 in Arbil and Duhok. A total of 25 foreign oil companies are operating in the region, the largest being Anglo-Turkish outfit Genel Energy.
In July, crude oil exports from Iraq to Turkey’s southern province of Ceyhan, where oil is stored and shipped to international markets, totaled 16 million barrels.
The Kirkuk-Ceyhan oil pipeline has a capacity of 1.6 million barrels per day. The pipeline is critical for northern Iraqi oil exports.
Talking about the natural gas price which Turkey will buy at from Iraq in 2017, Yıldız said Turkey will not buy at half price, but added that it is “normal” to pay less as a neighboring country.
The expected amount of natural gas is four billion cubic meters. The volume may increase by two billion cubic meters every year, and will eventually reach 10 billion cubic meters.