Minister: Iran, Iraq to Ink Oil Swap Deal Soon
TEHRAN (FNA)- Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Zangeneh underlined that Tehran is expecting to sign an agreement with Baghdad in the near future in order to resume oil swap activities.
"We are likely to sign an oil swap agreement in the coming days according to which the oil produced in Iraq's Kirkuk province will be swapped with the equal amount in the Persian Gulf," Zangeneh told reporters on Sunday.
He reiterated that the agreement will envisage transferring Kirkuk oil to a refinery in Iran’s Western province of Kermanshah through trucks.
"The volume of oil trucked inside Iran would gradually increase to as high as 60,000 barrels per day (bpd)," Zangeneh told reporters after meeting his Iraqi counterpart Jabbar al-Luaibi.
Iran and Iraq signed a basic agreement in February that envisaged exporting Iraqi oil through the Iranian territory – a scheme that would be meant to minimize Baghdad’s reliance on the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) to export its oil through a pipeline to Turkey’s Ceyhan.
This came against the backdrop of a long-standing dispute between Baghdad and the Kurdish region over the pipeline to Turkey.
The recent developments around the KRG’s independence referendum and particularly the brief capture of Kirkuk by Kurdish forces and its subsequent liberation by Iraqi forces last month further heightened tensions in oil relations between Baghdad and Erbil.
Last month, Iraqi forces seized control of the oil fields in Kirkuk from the Kurdish Peshmerga forces, which took control of the disputed province in 2014.
The move came amid tension between Baghdad and the KRG over the controversial referendum in September for Kurdish independence.
source : farsnews