BAGHDAD: Iraq’s federal government and the Kurdistan autonomous region signed an accord on Tuesday to allow Kurdish oil exports to resume through Turkey after they were halted 10 days earlier.
The agreement, signed in Baghdad in the presence of Prime Minister Mohamed Shia Al-Sudani and Kurdish Premier Masrour Barzani, was to be implemented “today,” a Kurdish regional government official told AFP.
The deal was described as temporary but signals the end of independent oil exports by northern Iraq’s Kurdish regional government.
The agreement comes two days after Iraq, major oil exporters announced a sharp reduction in their production from May that sent up global energy prices.
Barzani said on Twitter that the deal is “temporary” until Iraq’s parliament agrees a new oil and gas law, but he called it “a crucial step toward ending the long-standing dispute” between Irbil and Baghdad.
Ankara had stopped handling Iraqi Kurdish oil last month after an international tribunal ruled in a nine-year-old dispute that Baghdad was right to insist on overseeing all Iraqi oil exports.
Oil exports are the key revenue source for both the federal and regional governments and their management has long been a sensitive topic in relations.
Sales of Kurdistan crude will be managed from now by the State Oil Marketing Organization, a federal government official and a Kurdish official told AFP.
A joint committee formed by the federal and regional governments will supervise the export process, they added.
Revenues will be paid into an account under the control of the Kurdish government which will be overseen by Baghdad, they said.