Arbil-Baghdad deal guarantees stability: Turkish energy minister
ANKARA - Anadolu Agency
Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yıldız speaks at a press conference. AA PhotoAn agreement reached between Baghdad and Arbil is a guarantee of stability for the country and the region, said Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yıldız at a press conference in the northwestern Turkish province of Kocaeli.
“Stabilization in the country means stabilization for the region, so this is pleasing news,” said Yıldız.
Turkey has exported 25 million barrels of northern Iraqi oil, which corresponds to revenue of over $2 billion, Yıldız said.
“This revenue is for the people of Iraq. This situation shows that Turkey’s foresight and strategies are right to the point, and it is a contribution to the region as well,” he said.
Iraq and the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) came to an agreement to resolve the dispute over oil exports from the northern Iraqi region on Nov. 13.
“We have agreed to resolve the dispute with our Kurdish friends and re-establish trust in a fair and lawful way,” Adil Abdul-Mahdi, Iraq’s oil minister, said in a statement, released on the Oil Ministry’s website. “The dispute had not only affected economic, security and political events, but also started to affect national unity,” he added.
In accordance with the agreement, the Iraqi government will pay the KRG $500 million as a start and, in exchange, Arbil has agreed to put 150,000 barrels of crude oil per day at the disposal of Iraq’s federal government.
Yıldız also answered questions as to whether the Barbaros Hayrettin Paşa seismic vessel would continue its natural gas explorations in the eastern Mediterranean region, saying: “Our vessel is exploring and this exploration is for the whole region. We are unhappy that the issue has turned into a crisis.”
Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades suspended peace talks with Turkish Cyprus two weeks ago over the divided island after Turkey sent its gas exploration seismic vessel to waters off Cyprus.
Turkey and the Turkish Cypriot government have strongly opposed any unilateral move by the Greek Cypriot administration to explore for any hydrocarbon resources around the island, saying its natural resources should be exploited in a fair manner under a united Cyprus.