Iraqi officials deny north oil exports have resumed

Apr 20, 2005 02:00 AM

Iraqi oil officials denied a report that Baghdad has resumed crude oil exports to Turkey's Mediterranean port of Ceyhan.
"News that we have resumed exports from our northern oil fields are baseless," Assam Jihad, the oil ministry spokesman, told. "It is really ironic how we could resume exports while pipelines carrying crude from Kirkuk oil fields to the Turkish port are subjected to daily acts of sabotage," he said.

An official with the State Oil Marketing Organization, or SOMO, also denied the news reports. A shipping agent at the Turkish outlet said pumping through the pipeline had yet to resume, with Ceyhan's storage tanks still containing around 500,000 barrels of Kirkuk crude.
"I spoke to the port authorities this morning, but they said there was no flow," the agent said.

A report said that Baghdad officially resumed crude oil exports to Ceyhan, quoting a SOMO official.
Persistent, almost daily, sabotage of the northern oil pipeline network and facilities has kept Kirkuk exports shut for most of this year except for a few days of pumping through the pipeline to Turkey. In the latest attack, insurgents blew up a key pipeline that carries crude oil from Kirkuk fields to Beiji, the country's largest refinery.

Iraq exports around 1.5 mm bpd from its southern oil fields via offshore terminals in the Persian Gulf.

Source: Dow Jones
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