Iraq Budget Deepens Dispute Over Kurdish Oil Revenues
By Hassan Hafidh
The Iraqi parliament Thursday passed a budget for 2013 that allocated to Kurdistan just a fraction of the oil revenue requested by the semi-autonomous region, a move that deepens a dispute that has disrupted oil exports from the north of the country.
The parliament agreed that the Iraqi central government should make $650 million in payments to the Kurdish government, which would be used to pay companies operating in the region for oil exports, said Ibrahim al-Mutlaq, a member of the parliamentary finance committee. The Kurdish government had asked for $3.5 billion, he said.
The budget decision adds to existing tensions between the Kurdish region and Baghdad over oil exploration rights, trade with Turkey and the redevelopment of oil fields in a disputed territory. The dispute over the payment of oil revenues has already led to the suspension of crude oil exports from the Kurdish region since December.
Kurdish lawmakers boycotted the session which led to the passing of the budget, Mr. al-Mutlaq said. Kurdish officials weren’t immediately available to comment.
By posting your comment, you agree to abide by our Posting rules