Iraq

Iraqi forces battle their way toward Mosul airport

20 Feb 2017   Iraq

U.S.-backed Iraqi forces fought Islamic State fighters on Monday to clear the way to Mosul’s airport, on the second day of a ground offensive on the jihadists’ remaining stronghold in the western side of the city. Federal police and elite interior ministry units known as Rapid Response are leading the charge toward the airport, located on the southern limit of the Mosul, trying to dislodge the militants from a nearby hill known as Albu Saif. The Iraqi forces plan is to turn the airport into a close support base for the onslaught into western Mosul itself. Islamic State militants are essentially under siege in western Mosul, along with an estimated 650,000 civilians, after they were forced out of the eastern part […]

US Defense Secretary Mattis: No plan to seize Iraqi oil

20 Feb 2017   Iraq

U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said Monday the United States does not intend to seize Iraqi oil, shifting away from an idea proposed by President Donald Trump that has rattled Iraq’s leaders. Mattis’ arrived on an unannounced visit in Iraq as the battle to oust Islamic State militants from western Mosul moved into its second day, and as the Pentagon considers ways to accelerate the campaign against IS in Iraq and Syria. Those efforts could be complicated by Trump’s oil threat and his inclusion of Iraq in the administration’s travel ban – twin blows that have roiled the nation and spurred local lawmakers to pressure Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi to reduce cooperation with Washington. “I think all of us here in this room, all of us in America have generally paid for our gas and oil all along, and I’m sure that we will continue to […]

Iraq’s February Oil Sales Accelerate Despite OPEC Effort to Cut

17 Feb 2017   Iraq

Daniel Yergin Expects Big U.S. Oil Producer OPEC Response Iraqi crude shipments rose 3 percent in the first half of February even after OPEC’s second-biggest producer agreed to participate in global output cuts to mop up a glut that has put pressure on oil prices. Exports increased to 3.93 million barrels a day in the first 15 days of the month, 122,000 barrels a day more than the average for all of January, according to port-agent reports and ship-tracking data compiled by Bloomberg. Shipments from the southern Iraqi port of Basra grew by 10 percent, while sales by the Kurdish Regional Government in the north of the country were up 13 percent, the data show. The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries is limiting output in the first half of this year to cut global crude stockpiles that are weighing on prices. The group agreed on Nov. 30 to reduce […]

Iraq plans to acquire ‘large fleet’ of oil tankers

17 Feb 2017   Iraq

Iraq plans to acquire a “large fleet” of oil tankers to transport the OPEC nation’s crude to global markets, Oil Minister Jabar al-Luaibi said in a statement on Friday. The nation’s tanker fleet was largely destroyed during the U.S.-led offensive to dislodge Iraq from Kuwait in 1991, according to the state-run Iraqi Oil Tankers Company’s website. The company owned as many as 24 tankers in the 1980s. “The ministry is keen to restructure the company and develop its operations by building and buying a large fleet of tankers,” Luaibi told the company’s management, according to the statement. Iraq is OPEC’s second-largest producer, after Saudi Arabia. (Reporting by Maher Chmaytelli; Editing by Adrian Croft)

Trump Burning Bridges In Iraq Over “Take the Oil” Comments

17 Feb 2017   Iraq

“The old expression, ‘to the victor belong the spoils’—you remember. I always used to say, keep the oil. I wasn’t a fan of Iraq. I didn’t want to go into Iraq. But I will tell you, when we were in, we got out wrong…we should have kept the oil.” Those were President Trump’s comments at the CIA the day after his inauguration in January. President Donald Trump has repeatedly said that the U.S. should have “taken Iraq’s oil,” an argument that he revisited as recently as last week. “We’ve spent $6 trillion…in the Middle East,” President Trump said during a meeting with airline executives at the White House on February 9. “ We’ve got nothing. We’ve got nothing. We never even kept a small, even a tiny oil well. Not one little oil well. I said, ‘Keep the oil.’” The notion that the U.S. military should have taken Iraq’s […]

Assassination and bombings roil Basra

16 Feb 2017   Iraq

ABasra leaders are scrambling to contain an outbreak of violence that has targeted political figures and provoked outrage among Shia paramilitary groups.The spate of violence began with the assassination, on Feb. 8, of Bassam al-Mosawi, the general secretary of the paramilitary group Hizbollah Iraq. Over the following week, six improvised explosive devices (IEDs) have detonated around the city, one outside the home of an official from the Dawa political party.In response to the deteriora… This content is for registered users. Please login to continue. If you are not a registered user, you may purchase a subscription or sign up for a free trial . […]

Iraq Plans For Enormous Boost To Refining Capacity

15 Feb 2017   Iraq

Iraq’s government is ambitious and it wants to make the most of the country’s oil and gas reserves. Plans for an expansion of the country’s refinery network have been circulating for years, but the war with IS has put these on hold. What’s worse is that the prospects for these plans are gloomy unless it gets a significant amount of external help. Before the war with IS engulfed OPEC’s second-largest exporter, plans were to add five new refineries to the network over a period of 20 years, starting in 2008. At the time, the refining capacity of Iraq stood around 886,000 bpd. Since then, the only progress made has been the start of construction of the Karbala refinery, as one expert, the former chief of the Energy Study Secretarial of OPEC, notes in an industry analysis. In it, Saadallah al Fathi quotes information from an unnamed industry insider who […]

New deal links Kirkuk oil and KRG refineries

15 Feb 2017   Iraq

The federal Oil Ministry has begun sending NOC-produced crude to KRG refineries, generating badly needed fuel that will supply areas liberated from IS. New deal links Kirkuk oil and KRG refineries Kirkuk Gov. Najmaldin Karim (far right) and Deputy Oil Minister Dhia Jaffar (second from right) meet with oil officials in Kirkuk, including Saad Hassan, the CEO of Qaiwan Group (fourth from left), and Baz Karim, CEO of KAR Group (third from left), on June 6, 2016. (Photo credit: Kirkuk governor’s office) Federally operated oil fields in Kirkuk are now feeding privately run refineries in the Kurdistan region, in a new cooperative framework that could dramatically boost fuel supplies to areas of Ninewa province liberated from the Islamic State (IS) group.The deal represents deepening pragmatism between the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), Kirkuk province, and the federal government over how to best manage Kirkuk’s oil without becoming entangled in long-running […]

Iraq to cut March Basra oil exports to lowest since August: program

14 Feb 2017   Iraq

Iraq, OPEC’s second-largest producer, plans to cut crude exports from its southern port of Basra to 3.013 million barrels per day (bpd) in March, the lowest since August, a loading program obtained by Reuters showed. Basra Light exports in March will drop to 2.207 million bpd and exports for Basra Heavy will fall slightly to 806,000 bpd, according to the program. (Reporting by Florence Tan and Olga Yagova)

Iraq’s Oil Flow to Plunge as Maintenance Helps Meet OPEC Pledge

14 Feb 2017   Iraq

Saudi Arabia Cuts Oil Output by Most in 8 Years Iraq’s oil exports are poised to slump to a seven-month low in March as ongoing maintenance at some of its biggest fields coincides with a seasonal slump in shipments, potentially helping the country to meet a pledge to OPEC that it would restrict crude supply. The second-biggest producer in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries will export 3.01 million barrels a day of crude from its Persian Gulf export terminals, down from 3.64 million in February, loading programs obtained by Bloomberg show. The March figure is the lowest since August, while this month’s flows are scheduled to be the highest since October 2015. While the slump could help Iraq to honor its commitment to OPEC, what’s harder to judge is the extent to which the reduced flows reflect a government-led push […]

Iraq Reduces Exports From Basra Terminal

14 Feb 2017   Iraq

Iraq will reduce the amount of crude oil it exports via its largest port terminal in Basra to 3.013 million bpd next month, according to loading data seen by Reuters. This is the lowest daily figure since last August. The Basra light blend will account for 2.21 million bpd of total Basra exports. This may be a signal that Iraq is working to improve its compliance with the November 30 production cut agreement struck by OPEC’s members in a bid to prop up crude prices. As of end-January, Iraq was still producing 130,000 bpd above its quota. In a string of mixed signals, however, last week, the state-owned South Oil Company, which operates the Basra terminal, said it would stop operations for 24 hours because of the installation of a new feed-in pipeline: the terminal’s loading capacity currently stands at 1.8 million bpd. In January, the South Oil Company […]

Trump Moves Spark Iraqi Anger, Calls Against Future Alliance

13 Feb 2017   Iraq

Reverberations from President Donald Trump’s travel ban and other stances are threatening to undermine future U.S.-Iraqi security cooperation, rattling a key alliance that over the past two years has slowly beaten back the Islamic State group. Iraq’s prime minister, Haider al-Abadi, has sought to contain any backlash from public anger sparked by Trump’s executive order banning Iraqis from traveling to the U.S. Also breeding resentment and suspicion are Trump’s repeated statements that the Americans should have taken Iraq’s oil and his hard line against Iran, a close ally of al-Abadi’s government. Al-Abadi and Trump spoke Thursday night for the first time since Trump’s inauguration. The U.S. leader, who has pledged a stronger fight against IS militants, promised increased help for Iraq against terrorism, and al-Abadi asked him to remove Iraq from the travel ban, according to an Iraqi official who spoke on condition of anonymity to […]

Fireballs and booby traps: On the front lines with the oil workers battling ISIS

13 Feb 2017   Iraq

The flames exploded into the sky like a volcanic eruption, blanketing a swath of the Iraqi countryside in a noxious haze of black smoke. The inferno reached more than 300 feet high on a recent afternoon when the wind shifted direction, bending the billowing wall of fire toward the men from Iraq’s North Oil Co. on the ground below. Within seconds, a fast-moving cloud of hot gas and thick smoke washed over the work site, blotting out the sun and sending workers and engineers scurrying for safety. Some of the men sprinted toward their vehicles; others took cover in corrugated tin sheds, where they patiently waited for the wind to change […]

More drilling planned for Kurdish north of Iraq

10 Feb 2017   Iraq

Steady payments from the Kurdish government in Iraq and improved market conditions means it’s time to start drilling more, Norwegian company DNO said. DNO said it received $210 million in payments last year for crude oil exported from its Tawke field in the Kurdish north of Iraq. So far this year, the company received $59 million from the semiautonomous Kurdish government for crude oil exports. “These payments create momentum as we move into 2017,” DNO’s Executive Chairman Bijan Mossavar-Rahmani said in a statement . Provided those payments continue, the company said it planned to drill three more wells at its flagship Tawke field with the aim of bringing production to beyond the current rate of 115,000 barrels per day. Third […]

Taq Taq decline highlights Kurdistan oil woes

2 Feb 2017   Iraq

Within two years, production at one of Kurdistan’s flagship oil fields has collapsed by about 75 percent.The rapid decline of the Taq Taq field is an emblem for Kurdistan’s struggling energy sector, where low oil prices and payment delays have left companies without adequate incentive to invest in production capacity.In a statement on Jan. 24, Genel Energy, which jointly manages Taq Taq with a subsidiary of China’s Sinopec, said that production for the month so far has dropped to a… This content is for registered users. Please login to continue. If you are not a registered user, you may purchase a subscription or sign up for a free trial .

Iraqi oil player may be facing headwinds

2 Feb 2017   Iraq

Iraqi oil player Gulf Keystone Petroleum said it was planning further investments this year, but still facing commercial pressures. The company is among those with a strong focus on the oil reserves in the semiautonomous Kurdish north of Iraq, which has been relatively stable even as the terrorist group calling itself the Islamic State made territorial claims in the region. Operating the Shaikan oil field in the Kurdish region, Gulf Keystone reported total average gross production for 2016 at 34,794 barrels of oil per day, at the upper range of its guidance for the year. CEO Jon Ferrier said in a statement he was pleased with the performance last year as most companies were squeezed considerably by a market downturn characterized by historically low […]

Iraq Plays Ball With OPEC as Tanker Tracking Shows Flows Are Cut

1 Feb 2017   Iraq

Oil flows out of Iraq suggest that the Middle East country is complying, at least in part, with OPEC’s plan to curb production. Observed shipments in January were 109,000 barrels a day below October’s level, the month used as a baseline for the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries’ reductions plan. That indicates that Iraq has implemented around half of the production cut it agreed as part of the accord, assuming flows provide an indication of output. Shipments from OPEC’s second-largest producer fell to 3.805 million barrels a day in January from December’s 4.03 million, tanker-tracking data and port agent reports showed, with the decline mainly reflecting a 6.5 percent drop in flows from the southern port of Basra. “The Iraqis are making the bulk of their cuts at southern fields,” said Robin Mills, chief executive officer of Dubai-based consultant Qamar Energy, who advises clients working in the region. “Most […]

Parliament jump-starts stalled oil corruption inquiry

1 Feb 2017   Iraq

Iraq’s Parliament has re-launched a committee to investigate oil sector corruption – the latest in a series of attempts to hold senior officials accountable for allegedly taking bribes.In a Jan. 17 order, Speaker Salim al-Jabouri tasked nine MPs from the Parliament’s oil and finance committees to “investigate the media reports that accused the Oil Ministry’s top officials of involvement in corruption.”The committee will focus on the Oil Ministry’s dealings with the Australian company Lei…

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U.S. interests in Iraq at risk over Trump provocations

31 Jan 2017   Iraq

Ten days into his presidency, Donald Trump’s policies and rhetoric have produced a political reaction in Baghdad that could hamper the war against the self-proclaimed Islamic State (IS) group and hurt American business interests in Iraq.Iraq’s Parliament passed a resolution Monday urging the Cabinet to take “reciprocal measures” in response to Trump’s Jan. 27 executive order barring Iraqis from entering the U.S. While the resolution is not binding, it highlights widespread political outrage…

Oil Minister: Iraq Has Already Cut 180,000 Bpd Under OPEC Deal

24 Jan 2017   Iraq, OPEC

Amid speculation whether Iraq would really play along with the OPEC production cuts, the oil minister of the cartel’s no.2 producer said on Monday that the country had already cut 180,000 bpd off its production, and planned to reduce output by another 30,000 bpd by the end of January. Speaking at an industry event in London, Iraq’s oil minister Jabar Ali al-Luaibi said that Iraq had cut production from a level of 4.75 million bpd, Reuters reports, but this was not the reference basket that OPEC used to determine who should cut what under the production cut agreement signed last November. Under the November 30 OPEC deal, Iraq had promised to cut 210,000 bpd from a reference production level of 4.561 million bpd —for a production target of 4.351 bpd. Before signing the agreement, OPEC’s second-biggest producer had pleaded exemption on the grounds that it needs revenues to fight […]

Kurdistan Pays Oil Companies, Breaking Seven-Week Cash Drought

23 Jan 2017   Iraq

The government of Iraqi Kurdistan has paid international oil companies for the first time in seven weeks, as rising crude prices give a much-needed boost to the region’s coffers. DNO ASA, Genel Energy Plc and Gulf Keystone Petroleum Ltd received a combined $53.9 million for oil sold in October, the companies said on Monday. The Kurdistan Regional Government paid for their September exports on Dec. 5 and still owes them for crude sold in November and December. Shares of the companies rose. The KRG has struggled to keep up regular payments to international contractors as it contends with low crude prices, a dispute over revenues with the federal government in Baghdad, large numbers of internal refugees, and a long war with Islamic State militants. Oil has risen almost 20 percent since OPEC and other producers agreed last month to curb supply , easing the financial strain on the region. […]

President Trump Just Told The CIA The U.S. Should Have Stolen Iraq’s Oil

23 Jan 2017   Iraq, USA

President Donald Trump told the CIA on Saturday that the so-called Islamic State probably would never have existed if the United States had seized Iraq’s oilfields, a claim that flies in the face of the analysis of most foreign policy experts and international law. In unprepared remarks introducing his pick to lead the intelligence agency, Rep. Mike Pompeo (R-Kan.), Trump told CIA officials that when the United States went into Iraq, we should have “kept the oil.” “Now I said it for economic reasons,” Trump said. “But if you think about it, Mike, if we kept the oil, you probably wouldn’t have ISIS because that’s where they made their money in the first place, so we should have kept the oil. But, OK, maybe we’ll have another chance.” It’s a claim that Trump repeatedly used on the campaign trail. But the president’s willingness to tell the CIA ― and, […]

Iraqi forces consolidate gains in half-liberated Mosul

21 Jan 2017   Iraq

 For one brigadier in Iraq’s elite Counter Terrorism Service (CTS), the final stage of liberating the eastern half of Mosul was personal: he could rescue his relatives. On Wednesday, as Iraqi forces were conducting clearance operations in the last contested neighborhoods, the brigadier – who requested anonymity because his actions were not sanctioned by superiors – left his vehicle and went searching for an aunt he hadn’t seen for over 15 years. Down an alleyway in the Muhandiseen neighborhood, which IS had […]

IS guerilla campaign intensifies in Diyala, Salahaddin

20 Jan 2017   Iraq

Despite losing ground in Mosul, IS militants to the east have stepped up insurgent attacks, conducting deadly raids on security forces, oil infrastructure, and rural villages. Hadi al-Amiri (R), the head of the Badr Organization, speaks with officers on the outskirts of Muqdadiyah, in Diyala province, on Jan. 23, 2015. (STRINGER/Reuters) On the evening of Jan. 13, Ali Haidar, the commander of the 110th Brigade of the Badr Organization paramilitary group, received a tip from an Iranian intelligence officer operating in Diyala province: five militants from the self-proclaimed Islamic State (IS) were in the Nada Area, just south of Khanaqin.Haidar led a detachment of 35 troops to investigate. But instead of catching a few IS militants by surprise, it was the Badr soldiers who were ambushed – by at least 20 militants – in a figh…

 

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Halliburton to drill wells for Shell, doubling Iraq’s Majnoon oil field output: sources

19 Jan 2017   Iraq

Shell has signed a $210 million contract with Halliburton to drill 30 wells in Iraq’s Majnoon oil field, two oil sources said on Thursday. The agreement will double the field’s production after three years, the sources said. Shell, the operator of the giant Majnoon field in southern Iraq, could not be reached immediately for comment. Majnoon’s output should rise to about 400,000 barrels per day in three years, from 220,000 bpd now, according to the sources. (Reporting by Aref Mohammed and Saif Hameed; writing by Maher Chmaytelli; Editing by Susan Fenton)

Iraq exports fall as OPEC cuts begin

19 Jan 2017   Iraq

Iraq has reduced the rate of its oil exports by about 6 percent as it begins the difficult process of implementing an OPEC agreement to cut production.”I’m confident we can get to the OPEC cut level by the end of the month,” said Ali Nazar al-Shatari, a senior official at the State Oil Marketing Organization (SOMO).Iraq is supposed to take 210,000 barrels per day (bpd) of production offline under the OPEC deal. Shatari said overall production is already down by about 170,000 bpd from th…

OPEC Commitments Push Iraq Towards Oil Export Deal With Kurds

18 Jan 2017   Iraq

Amid the ongoing struggle over oil control between the Iraqi Kurds and the Iraqi central government in Baghdad, the Iraqi central authorities have halted exports of oil from Kirkuk via the state’s marketing authority, SOMO—agreeing to let the oil all go to the Kurds. Crude exports had only been resumed in September after the two sides reached a revenue-sharing agreement to jointly export crude from the giant Kirkuk field, with the intention of splitting the oil between Baghdad and Erbil. Instead, the oil produced in Kirkuk will now be transferred to refineries in Kurdistan, according to Kurdish news agencies. The export and sale of oil produced in Kirkuk has been a complicated issue between Baghdad and the Iraqi Kurds. This oil is produced by the Iraqi federal government in northern Iraq, but exported via a pipeline system owned by the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG). At the height of the […]

More oil potential from Kurdish north of Iraq

11 Jan 2017   Iraq

The Kurdish north of Iraq continued to show its oil potential after a driller said operations were paving the way for additional exports. Oryx Petroleum Corp., a Canadian company focused on Kurdish oil, said it was making progress on appraisal and initial development of its Zey Gawra field after completing new drilling operations. Oil is flowing naturally from some wells at a rate of about 1,500 barrels per day. Vance Queria, the company’s CEO, said the completed new wells added to exports already under way from the site. “Preparations are underway to drill the third well in the appraisal and initial development of the Zey Gawra field before the middle of this year,” he said in a statement. […]

Iraq plans record February Basra oil exports despite OPEC cut in force

11 Jan 2017   Iraq

Iraq plans to raise crude exports from its southern port of Basra to an all-time high in February, keeping exports high even as OPEC production cuts take effect this month. The country’s State Oil Marketing Company (SOMO) plans to export 3.641 million barrels per day (bpd) of crude in February, according to trade sources and preliminary loading schedules obtained by Thomson Reuters on Tuesday, potentially beating a record of 3.51 million bpd set in December. The February volume includes 2.748 million bpd of Basra Light and 893,000 bpd of Basra Heavy, the documents showed. For January, SOMO had planned to export 2.627 million bpd of Basra Light and 903,000 bpd of Basra Heavy. Basra crude accounts for the bulk of oil exports from Iraq, the second-largest producer […]

Iraq Cuts Oil Production by 160,000 Barrels a Day in OPEC Deal

11 Jan 2017   Iraq

Iraq has reduced its oil production by 160,000 barrels a day as it starts to make the cuts it agreed to in a deal with other OPEC members last year. OPEC’s second-biggest producer hopes to meet its full cut of 210,000 barrels a day by the end of this month, Oil Minister Jabbar Al-Luaibi said by text message. Production is being cut from fields operated by the federal government, he said, rather than from fields run by international oil companies or from the Kurdish region in northern Iraq.

Iraq Could Kill The OPEC Deal

11 Jan 2017   Iraq

OPEC made an early New Year’s resolution when it promised the world that it will get thin – or more accurately that it will thin its output in an effort to help support prices. As anyone who has ever had a New Year’s resolution knows, those promises can be hard to keep. OPEC is about to find that out. The issue of challenging production cuts starts with OPEC’s second biggest producer – Iraq. Iraq has agreed to cut 210,000 barrels per day from its production levels. That sounds simple in theory – just switch off a few pumps. In reality it’s much more difficult than that. In particular, Iraq faces a thorny issue because it has contractual commitments that it has made with international oil companies which operate its massive southern oil fields. Those companies are not just going to go along with an edict issued by the Iraqi […]

Sonangol considering return to Iraq

11 Jan 2017   Angola, Iraq

Three years after security problems forced them out, Iraq is courting the Angolan state firm back to the Qayarah and Najmah fields. Iraqi Oil Minister Jabbar al-Luiebi (right) meets in his office with Edson dos Santos, executive administrator of Sonangol. (Source: Oil Ministry press office) Sonangol executives are considering whether – and when – to return to two oil projects south of Mosul, long plagued by security problems, which the company left just before the self-proclaimed Islamic State (IS) group launched its invasion of much of northern Iraq.Earlier this week in Baghdad, Iraqi Oil Minister Jabbar al-Luiebi met a Sonangol delegation led by Executive Administrator Edson dos Santos.Company leaders expect to discuss the prospect of returning to Iraq over the coming… This content is for registered users. Please login to continue. If you are not a registered user, you may purchase a subscription or sign up for a free […]

Iraq Cuts Oil Production by 160,000 Barrels a Day in OPEC Deal

10 Jan 2017   Iraq

Iraq has reduced its oil production by 160,000 barrels a day as it starts to make the cuts it agreed to in a deal with other OPEC members last year. OPEC’s second-biggest producer hopes to meet its full cut of 210,000 barrels a day by the end of this month, Oil Minister Jabbar Al-Luaibi said by text message. Production is being cut from fields operated by the federal government, he said, rather than from fields run by international oil companies or from the Kurdish region in northern Iraq.

More oil flowing from Kurdish north of Iraq

10 Jan 2017   Iraq

Results from a well in the Kurdish north of Iraq that was sidelined by lower crude oil prices are promising so far, Norwegian energy company DNO said. DNO said testing from the Peshkabir-2 well in the Kurdish north yielded about 3,800 barrels of oil per day. The company said the well was planned for 2015 , but lower crude oil prices and delayed payments from the Kurdish government caused planning setbacks. Crude oil prices dropped from above $100 per barrel in 2014 to below $30 per barrel in early 2016, but have held above the $50 mark since late last year. The low price of crude oil limited revenue streams for exploration and production, but DNO said the market was showing signs […]

Iraq’s Southern Oil Exports Hit Record Before OPEC Cuts

9 Jan 2017   Iraq

Iraq’s oil exports from its southern ports in the Gulf reached a record high in December, just before the country was due to join other major producers in cutting output to help curb a global oversupply. Shipments from southern ports in Basra Province averaged 3.51 million barrels a day in December, Oil Minister Jabbar Al-Luaibi said in an e-mailed statement, up from 3.407 million in November. He didn’t disclose figures for exports through Iraq’s northern pipeline network, which typically average about 600,000 barrels a day. “Achieving this record average will not affect Iraq’s decision to cut output from the beginning of 2017,” Al-Luaibi said. “Iraq is committed to achieving producers’ joint goals to control the oil glut in world markets.” The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries reached a deal on Nov. 30 to pare output by 1.2 million barrels a day in the first six months of 2017 in […]

Minister: Iraq’s oil exports from south climb further

9 Jan 2017   Iraq

Iraq’s oil minister says crude oil exports from the country’s southern ports inched up last month. Jabar Ali al-Luaibi says the exports for the first time stood at 3.510 million barrels per day in December, describing that level in a statement on Monday as the “highest and unprecedented” yet. The oil comes from government-controlled fields in central and southern Iraq. November daily exports from those export facilities stood at 3.407 million barrels. Al-Luaibi lauded his ministry’s plans and the work of a handful of international oil companies developing the country’s prized southern fields. Iraq holds the world’s fourth largest oil reserves, with some 143.1 billion barrels. Oil revenues make up nearly 95 percent of Iraq’s budget. Like other oil exporting countries, its economy has been hit by plummeting oil prices.

Iraq begins reducing oil output in keeping with OPEC decision: minister

6 Jan 2017   Iraq, OPEC

Iraq has begun implementing measures to reduce national oil output in keeping with an OPEC decision, the oil minister said on Thursday. “Iraq affirms its commitment to the OPEC decision which was taken in the last meeting in Vienna by putting in place a studied plan to reduce production from the country’s fields from the start of the new year,” Jabar Ali al-Luaibi said in a statement. OPEC agreed in November to cut output by 1.2 million barrels per day from January 2017 to support prices. Iraq, OPEC’s second-largest producer, agreed to reduce output by 200,000 bpd to 4.351 million bpd. Reliant on oil sales for most of its income, Iraq had resisted production cuts, saying it needed revenue to fund a war against Islamic […]

Iraq next to state commitment to OPEC cuts

6 Jan 2017   Iraq

Iraq has started trimming crude oil production in a managed fashion in order to comply with an OPEC agreement, the oil minister said. “Iraq is dealing wisely” with its commitment to cut production, Oil Minister Jabbar al-Luaibi, said in a statement . Cuts are in line with an agreement signed in November, the ministry reported. Iraq is among the top oil producers in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, which agreed to sideline a collective 1.2 million barrels per day to achieve balance between supply and demand. The OPEC deal uses an Iraqi oil production volume of 4.56 million bpd as a benchmark for a cut of about 4.6 percent. Iraq reported to OPEC that it produced about 3,000 bpd more in November than the reference used to cut the deal. Secondary sources told OPEC that Iraq produced about 4.8 million bpd and, if […]

After record year, Iraq readies OPEC cuts

6 Jan 2017   Iraq

Iraq’s federal government exported nearly 10 percent more oil in 2016 than it did the year before, though the Oil Ministry is cutting production in the new year as part of an OPEC agreement to pare global supplies and boost the price of oil.Not only did major fields increase production over the course of the year, but the Oil Ministry has been revamping its southern export system to accommodate the new volumes. In the north, a tenuous political deal with the autonomous Kurdistan Regional Gov…

Iraq begins reducing oil output in keeping with OPEC decision: minister

5 Jan 2017   Iraq

Iraq has begun implementing measures to reduce national oil output in keeping with an OPEC decision, the oil minister said on Thursday. “Iraq affirms its commitment to the OPEC decision which was taken in the last meeting in Vienna by putting in place a studied plan to reduce production from the country’s fields from the start of the new year,” Jabar Ali al-Luaibi said in a statement. OPEC agreed in November to cut output by 1.2 million barrels per day from January 2017 to support prices. Iraq, OPEC’s second-largest producer, agreed to reduce output by 200,000 bpd to 4.351 million bpd. Reliant on oil sales for most of its income, Iraq had resisted production cuts, saying it needed revenue to fund a war against Islamic […]

Analysis: What Iraq reveals about Rex Tillerson

5 Jan 2017   Iraq, USA

Rex Tillerson has never held a government position, but he does have a long track record of conducting foreign policy as the leader of ExxonMobil – one of the largest and most profitable oil companies ever. He’s likely to be confirmed as the next U.S. Secretary of State after hearings next week before the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee, which will probe whether he can parlay his experience as a business leader into the world’s most powerful diplomat. Exxon’s activities in Iraq over the past decade provide a rich series of case studies that illuminate how Tillerson has negotiated with foreign leaders and pursued business interests aggressively – sometimes with little apparent regard for the political […]

Iraqi PM says Kurds exporting more oil than allocated

4 Jan 2017   Iraq

Iraq Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said the autonomous Kurdish region was exporting more than its allocated share of oil as the country seeks to comply with an OPEC output cut. In November, OPEC agreed to cut output by 1.2 million barrels per day from January 2017 to support prices. Iraq, OPEC’s second largest producer, agreed to reduce output by 200,000 bpd to 4.351 million bpd. “The region is exporting more than its share, more than the 17 percent stated in the budget,” Abadi said. Oil exports from the Kurdish region have long been a point of contention with Baghdad, which claims sole authority over sales of all the country’s crude. Kurdish regional authorities have yet to publish oil export figures for December, but the Ministry of […]

Is The OPEC Deal Falling Apart Already? Iraq Accuses Kurds Of Non-Compliance

4 Jan 2017   Iraq

Back on December 15, two weeks ahead of the day the OPEC production cut agreement was set to begin, according to which some 1.2 million barrels per day in oil production from OPEC member states would be removed, a report emerged that contrary to its mandated production cut of 210Kbpd, Iraq was actually preparing to boost its exports by 7%. As the WSJ first reported , instead of cutting its crude production by 4% as it “promised” it would do in the Vienna November 30 meeting, Iraq instead planned to increase crude-oil exports in January, according to government records, immediately raising questions about its commitment to the OPEC’s landmark production agreement. Iraq’s national oil company, the State Organization for Marketing of Oil, or SOMO, had plans as of December 8, nine days after agreeing to cut production, to instead increase deliveries of its Basra oil grades by about 7% […]

Iraq: Suicide bombing kills at least 22 in Baghdad

2 Jan 2017   Iraq

A suicide bomber blew up his explosives-laden vehicle Monday in a bustling market area in Baghdad, killing at least 22 people, Iraqi officials said, hours after the arrival of French President Francois Hollande to the country and amid a fierce fight against the Islamic State group. The bomber driving a pickup truck attacked an outdoor fruit and vegetable market, day laborers and a police checkpoint in Baghdad’s eastern Sadr City district, a police officer said. Up to 35 other people were wounded in that attack, he said, adding that the death toll was expected to rise. Two medical officials confirmed the casualty figures. All officials spoke on condition of anonymity as they were not authorized to release information. In an online statement, the Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the attack, saying it targeted Shiites. The Associated Press could not verify the authenticity […]

Two blasts in central Baghdad kill at least 21: police, medics

31 Dec 2016   Iraq

Two bombs exploded at a busy market in central Baghdad on Saturday killing at least 21 people and wounding more than 40 others, police and medics said. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attacks, but Islamic State regularly targets civilians in the Iraqi capital. Police said the blasts went off near car spare parts shops in Sinak during the morning rush. One of them was triggered by a suicide bomber, the other was a planted explosive, an Interior Ministry official told Reuters. Islamic State has lost much of the northern and western territory it seized in 2014 and is now resisting an Iraqi offensive on the northern city of Mosul, the ultra-hardline group’s last major stronghold in the country. (Reporting by Kareem Raheem and Ahmed Rasheed; Writing by Stephen Kalin; Editing by Michael Perry)

Iraq commits to OPEC cuts, sends oil prices higher

29 Dec 2016   Iraq

Crude oil prices edged higher in early trading Wednesday in thin volumes amid expectations OPEC will hold the production line, though doubts persist. Members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and non-OPEC members agreed to meet Jan. 13 to review compliance with recent agreements to start cutting production next week. The move is designed to ease the supply-side strains that pulled oil prices below $30 per barrel in early 2016 and investors saw word of the meeting as a reason for optimism. Iraqi Oil Minister Jabar al-Luaibi told the official Kuwait News Agency his country was committed to cutting as much as 210,000 barrels per day from production starting next month. Iraq, he said, is keen on maintaining balance in the global market and has an eye on oil priced at $60 per barrel. The price for Brent crude oil moved up […]

Iraq Says Kurds, Foreign Companies Agree to Cut Oil Output

23 Dec 2016   Iraq

Iraq said most international oil companies working in the country, along with the nation’s semi-autonomous Kurds, have agreed to cut crude output to fulfill an OPEC accord. Iraq is fully committed to delivering on OPEC’s Nov. 30 agreement to reduce supplies, Oil Minister Jabbar al-Luaibi said Thursday in Cairo at a meeting of the Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries, known as OAPEC. Jabbar al-Luaibi Photographer: Akos Stiller/Bloomberg The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries resolved on Nov. 30 to reduce production by 1.2 million barrels a day in an effort to end a three-year supply glut and buoy prices. The plan was widened on Dec. 10 when 11 non-members including Russia and Kazakhstan promised to join in the cuts. Iraq, OPEC’s second-biggest producer after Saudi Arabia, pledged to trim output by 210,000 barrels a day, or 4.5 percent of its total production. The country initially resisted the plan to […]

Seeking financial rescue, KRG offered Turkey major oil assets

23 Dec 2016   Iraq, Turkey

Emails published by Wikileaks reveal a proposal for Turkey to take equity stakes in Kurdistan’s biggest oil fields, in exchange for nearly $5 billion of immediate financial assistance. Turkey’s then-Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan (R) and President of Iraqi Kurdistan Massoud Barzani in Diyarbakir on Nov. 16, 2013. (Reuters) With his government drowning in debt, Kurdistan’s oil minister earlier this year laid out a bold offer to his counterpart in Turkey: take substantial stakes in the region’s main oil and gas fields in exchange for nearly $5 billion in debt forgiveness and cash.In a March 19, 2016 memo, Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) Minister of Natural Resources Ashti Hawrami acknowledges over a billion dollars that Turkey has already sunk into Kurdistan and its energy sector. Then, he effectively asks T… This content is for registered users. Please login to continue. If you are not a registered user, you may purchase a […]

Iraq Says Kurds, Foreign Companies Agree to Cut Oil Output

22 Dec 2016   Iraq

Iraq said most international oil companies working in the country, along with the nation’s semi-autonomous Kurds, have agreed to cut crude output to fulfill an OPEC accord. Iraq is fully committed to delivering on OPEC’s Nov. 30 agreement to reduce supplies, Oil Minister Jabbar al-Luaibi said Thursday in Cairo at a meeting of the Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries, known as OAPEC. Jabbar al-Luaibi Photographer: Akos Stiller/Bloomberg The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries resolved on Nov. 30 to reduce production by 1.2 million barrels a day in an effort to end a three-year supply glut and buoy prices. The plan was widened on Dec. 10 when 11 non-members including Russia and Kazakhstan promised to join in the cuts. Iraq, OPEC’s second-biggest producer after Saudi Arabia, pledged to trim output by 210,000 barrels a day, or 4.5 percent of its total production. The country initially resisted the plan to […]

Caught Red-Handed? Iraq Is Talking Down Its Oil Exports

21 Dec 2016   Iraq

Even though crude prices may be subdued amid thin trading over the holiday period, there is always a thing (or five) going on in the oil markets. Henceforth, hark…here are five things to consider in oil markets today: 1) SOMO, Iraq’s state oil marketing company, has issued a statement saying it has firm plans to ‘ cut daily crude oil exports by specified percentages ‘ as it looks to comply with its agreed production cut of 210,000 bpd. One thing it doesn’t mention, however, is whether it will cut output by January 1 , as agreed. (An aside: my gosh, 2017 is going to be epic). 2) According to our ClipperData , crude waiting offshore in the Gulf of Mexico has risen to a four-month high at just under 25 million barrels, amid strong arrivals from the Arab Gulf last week. There is still a backlog of large vessels […]