Iraq’s oil exports through Turkey expected to resume in October 2023


Northern Iraq’s oil exports through the Turkish port of Ceyhan are anticipated to restart no earlier than October 2023, as reported today. This development aligns with the upcoming visit of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to Baghdad.

The originally scheduled trip in August had been postponed, according to sources cited by Reuters.

The interruption of oil exports, which saw a daily output of 450,000 barrels from the Kurdistan region of Iraq to the Turkish port of Ceyhan, commenced on March 25 when Turkey halted these exports. This suspension incurred significant financial losses for the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG).

The decision to suspend these oil exports followed an arbitration ruling from the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) in Paris. This ruling mandated Turkey to compensate Baghdad with $1.5 billion for damages resulting from the KRG’s unauthorized oil exports between 2014 and 2018. Notably, the KRG had initiated independent crude oil exports in 2013, a move that Baghdad considered illegal.

In a recent diplomatic effort, Iraqi Minister of Oil Hayan Abdul-Ghani held discussions in Ankara with Turkish Minister of Energy and Natural Resources Alparslan Bayraktar. During this meeting, the vital role of the oil pipeline between Iraq and Turkey was underscored.

Both officials emphasized the need to resume crude oil flows post-rehabilitation, with the Turkish side deeming these steps necessary following the earthquake that struck Turkey in February.

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