US Congress exerts efforts to resume Iraqi Kurdistan’s oil exports

Three members of the US Congress sent a letter to President Joe Biden in which they emphasized the need for a new US approach that would facilitate the reopening of the pipeline between the Kurdistan region of Iraq and Turkey, according to Reuters.

The pipeline contributes about 0.5 percent of global oil supplies and has been closed since March.

Two sources told Reuters that the losses of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) reached about $4 billion due to the halt of oil exports.

Turkey had stopped oil flows through the pipeline in northern Iraq on March 25, after the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) ordered Ankara to pay Baghdad $1.5 billion in compensation for damages caused by the KRG’s export of oil without permission from the federal government in Baghdad between 2014 and 2018.

The resumption of oil flows from northern Iraq will benefit the United States in light of the measures taken by the OPEC+ group to reduce oil supplies globally in order to raise prices.

The letter, which was signed by three members of the foreign affairs committee in the US Congress on Monday, mentioned that the KRG is one of the United States’ reliable partners in the Middle East.

The letter illustrated that the closure of the pipeline caused Iraqi Kurdistan to lose most of its income. It was also noted that the Prime Minister of the Kurdistan region of Iraq, Masrour Barzani, warned this month in a letter to Biden that the economic drain of Iraqi Kurdistan could destroy its economy.

In their letter, the members of Congress called for a new strategy in Iraq to help resolve the crisis without giving any details about what that strategy should be.

The step took place ahead of the meeting between the Iraqi Prime Minister, Mohammed Shia Al-Sudani, and the US Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, in New York.

Blinken stressed during the meeting that the United States supports the reopening of the pipeline.

News Code 159235

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