Iraq’s northern oil exports to Turkey yet to resume, Kurdish output shut in


London (Reuters) – Iraq’s northern oil exports to Turkey have not yet resumed, sources told Reuters on Thursday, leaving several fields shut in the semi-autonomous Kurdistan region.

Turkey halted flows of about 450,000 barrels per day, or 0.5% of global oil supply, via a pipeline from Iraq’s Kirkuk fields to Turkey’s Ceyhan port on March 25 after Iraq won an arbitration case.

In the case, Iraq accused Turkey of violating their 1973 pipeline agreement by allowing the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) to export oil without Baghdad’s consent between 2014 and 2018.

Iraq’s federal government and the KRG signed a temporary agreement on Tuesday to restart northern oil exports through Turkey, which several officials hoped would see exports resume that day.

Pipeline operators have yet to receive any instruction to restart flows, a source familiar with the exports told Reuters on condition of anonymity.

Iraq is still waiting for a response from Turkey, a separate source said.

A second arbitration case relating to the 1973 pipeline agreement for the period from 2018 onwards remains open.

Turkey wants that case resolved before reopening the pipeline, sources have previously told Reuters.

The prolonged pipeline outage has forced oil firms in the region to halt or reduce production at several fields, as storage fills up.

The Sarta field, which produced an average of 4,170 bpd last year, is offline, a spokesman for operator Genel Energy said on Thursday.

The firm said on March 29 that output from the field could flow until the end of the week, while tanks can take in production from its Taq Taq field, which produced 4,490 bpd last year, until April 21.

“The recent disruptions to oil exports from the Kurdistan Region have hurt the country as a whole. This agreement brings much needed revenue,” KRG Prime Minister Masrour Barzani said in a statement following the signing of Tuesday’s temporary deal.

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