News / Economy

Turkey to Seek Baghdad's Consent for Iraqi Kurdish Oil

Iraq's Deputy Prime Minister for Energy Hussain al-Shahristani (L) speaks during a joint news conference with Turkey's Energy Minister Taner Yildiz in Baghdad, Dec. 1, 2013.
Iraq's Deputy Prime Minister for Energy Hussain al-Shahristani (L) speaks during a joint news conference with Turkey's Energy Minister Taner Yildiz in Baghdad, Dec. 1, 2013.
Reuters
Oil exports from anywhere in Iraq to Turkey need the central government's approval, Baghdad and Ankara said on Sunday after a bilateral meeting aimed at diffusing a row over energy exports from Iraq's autonomous Kurdish region.
 
Turkey, hungry for energy and dependent on imports for almost all of its needs, wants Iraqi Kurdistan's oil to help diversify its energy supplies and reduce its ballooning $60 billion annual energy bill.
 
But Turkey's courtship of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) has infuriated the central government in Baghdad, which says it has sole authority to manage Iraqi energy resources.
 
“We agree that any exports must be with the approval of the Iraqi government and we will discuss the mechanism,” Iraq's deputy prime minister for energy Hussain al-Shahristani told a news conference with Turkey's Energy Minister Taner Yildiz in the Iraqi capital.
 
Yildiz said Turkey would seek Baghdad's approval for the commercial export of oil from Iraqi Kurdistan.
 
“We aim to win Iraq central government's consent for oil trade from the KRG to Turkey and to start a cooperation plan to serve the interests of all three parties,” a joint declaration from the ministers said.
 
Turkey and Iraqi Kurdistan signed a multi-billion-dollar energy package last week, sources close to the deal said on Friday, that will help transform the Iraqi region into an oil and gas powerhouse.
 
The Turkish foreign ministry has since said the deals had not been finalized and that it would seek Baghdad's cooperation.
 
Yildiz said the two sides had also discussed an existing plan to extend a pipeline to take crude oil from Iraq's southern Basra oil fields to Turkey.
 
It was Yildiz's first visit to Iraq since his plane was denied permission to land by Baghdad late last year when he tried to attend an annual energy conference in Arbil, Iraqi Kurdistan, amid the long-running oil dispute.
 
Yildiz will travel on to Arbil for the same conference, which starts on Monday.
 
Baghdad says Kurdish efforts towards oil independence could lead to the breakup of the country and the dispute has also raised concern in Washington.
 
Shahristani said on Thursday any energy deal with Arbil would be “an encroachment on the sovereignty of Iraq”.
 
Autonomous since 1991, Iraqi Kurdistan has often chafed against the central government and even threatened to secede, but still relies on Baghdad for a slice of the OPEC producer's $100-billion-plus budget.
 
It is already trucking its oil to world markets through Turkey and it plans to open a new export pipeline by the end of the year, angering Baghdad further.

You May Like

US Imposes Sanctions on Alleged Honduran Drug Gang

Treasury department alleges Los Valles group is responsible for smuggling tens of thousands of kilograms of cocaine into US each month More

At 91, Marvel Creator Stan Lee Continues to Expand his Universe

Company's chief emeritus hopes to interest new generation of children in superheroes of all shapes and sizes by publishing content across multiple media platforms More

Photogallery New Drug Protects Against Virus in Ebola Family

Study by researchers at University of Texas Medical Branch, Tekmira Pharmaceuticals is first looking at drug's effectiveness after onset of symptoms More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Five Patients Given Experimental Ebola Drug Said to Be Improvingi
X
Carol Pearson
August 19, 2014 11:43 PM
The World Health Organization has approved the use of experimental treatments for Ebola patients in West Africa. The Ebola outbreak there is unprecedented, the disease deadly. The number of people who have died from Ebola has surpassed 1,200. VOA's Carol Pearson reports on the ethical considerations of allowing experimental drugs to be used.
Video

Video Five Patients Given Experimental Ebola Drug Said to Be Improving

The World Health Organization has approved the use of experimental treatments for Ebola patients in West Africa. The Ebola outbreak there is unprecedented, the disease deadly. The number of people who have died from Ebola has surpassed 1,200. VOA's Carol Pearson reports on the ethical considerations of allowing experimental drugs to be used.
Video

Video In Ukraine, Fear and Distrust Remain Where Fighting has Stopped

As the Ukrainian military reclaims control of eastern cities from pro-Russian separatists, residents are getting a chance to rebuild their lives. VOA's Gabe Joselow reports from the town of Kramatorsk in Donetsk province, where a sense of fear is still in the air, and distrust of the government in Kyiv still runs deep.
Video

Video China Targets Overseas Assets of Corrupt Officials

As China presses forward with its anti-graft effort, authorities are targeting corrupt officials who have sent family members and assets overseas. The efforts have stirred up a debate at home on exactly how many officials take that route and how likely it is they will be caught. Rebecca Valli has this report.
Video

Video Leading The Fight Against Islamic State, Kurds Question Iraqi Future

Western countries including the United States have begun arming the Kurdish Peshmerga forces in northern Iraq to aid their battle against extremist Sunni militants from the Islamic State. But there are concerns that a heavily-armed Kurdistan Regional Government, or KRG, might seek to declare independence and cause the break-up of the Iraqi state. As Henry Ridgwell reports from London, the KRG says it will only seek greater autonomy from Baghdad.
Video

Video In Rural Kenya, Pressure Builds Against Female Circumcision

In some Kenyan communities, female genital mutilation remains a rite of passage. But activists are pushing back, with education for girls and with threats of punishment those who perform the circumcision. Mohammed Yusuf looks at the practice in the rural eastern community of Tharaka-Nithi.
Video

Video For Obama, Racial Violence is Personal Issue

The racial violence in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson is presenting U.S. President Barack Obama with an issue to which he has a deep personal connection. To many Americans, Obama's election as America's first black president marked a turning point in race relations in the United States, and Obama has made ending the violence a policy priority. On Monday he issued a new call for calm and understanding. Luis Ramirez reports from the White House.
Video

Video Clinton-Obama Relationship Could Impact 2016 Election

President Barack Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton have a long and complicated relationship. That relationship took another turn recently when Clinton criticized the president’s foreign policy. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone reports there is renewed attention on the Clinton-Obama relationship as Hillary Clinton considers running for
Video

Video Iran Looks to Maintain Influence in Baghdad With New Shia PM

Washington and Tehran share the goal of stopping Syrian-based militants in Iraq. But experts say it's Iran, not the United States, that will most influence how the new government in Baghdad approaches internal reforms and the war in Syria. VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns has the story.

AppleAndroid

World Currencies

EUR
USD
0.7492
JPY
USD
102.27
GBP
USD
0.5960
CAD
USD
1.0950
INR
USD
61.300

Rates may not be current.