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Iraqi Parliamentary Fact-Finding Committee Investigates Kurdistan Oil Exports

Iraqi Parliamentary Fact-Finding Committee Investigates Kurdistan Oil Exports

Monday, 23 September, 2019 - 11:00
Flames emerge from flare stacks at the oil fields in Kirkuk, Iraq October 18, 2017. REUTERS/Alaa Al-Marjani
Baghdad - Fadhel al-Nashmi
The Oil and Energy Parliamentary Committee decided Sunday to form a fact-finding committee on oil exports from Kurdistan region, which refrains from the obligation to deliver to the federal government its quota of oil.

The Kurdistan Region should deliver 250,000 barrels per day to the federal government in line with the 2019 budget.

“The new committee includes seven deputies and is required to submit its report to its presidency within two weeks of its formation,” the commission said in a statement published by the parliament’s official website.

It said it has discussed the invitation by Kurdistan Region’s president to the oil and energy, legal and financial committees.

Member of Oil and Energy Parliamentary Committee Amjad al-Oqabi said the commission was formed at the direction of Parliament Speaker Mohammed al-Halbousi, who has recently visited the Kurdish region.

Oqabi said Halbousi agreed with the Kurdish region’s Prime Minister, Masrour Barzani, to send a parliamentary committee and resolve the outstanding problems between Baghdad and Erbil on the oil issue.

He told Asharq Al-Awsat that the parliament is about to legislate 2020 budget.

To avoid the problem of oil revenues and its amount, he noted, this committee was formed to prepare a detailed report on the nature of the oil problem, and the quantities issued by the region and the parties to which this oil is sold.

He also stressed that the committee could know details of quantities issued by the region by relying on statistics of major regulatory companies and data released by the Federal Ministry of Oil. However, he noted that the region still refrains from handing Baghdad any barrel of oil from its share in the budget without providing any explanation.

Regarding news about some political parties and blocs’ determination to tighten up with the Kurdistan region's financial share in the 2020 budget, Oqabi pointed out that “the oil committee will not bargain or compliment this time.”

“The region must deliver its assessed share of oil, and if it was proven that it exports more than 250 thousand barrels, it will be asked to hand over all the oil revenues it already exports,” he said.

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