Iraq Resumes Kirkuk Oil Flow to Ceyhan

Source: www.gulfoilandgas.com 1/2/2007, Location: Middle East

Iraq resumed pumping Kirkuk crude oil to the Turkish export terminal of Ceyhan Monday after a two-week suspension, an Iraqi oil official said Tuesday. He said some 150,000 barrels were pumped, bringing stocks of Iraqi crude at Ceyhan to 3.65 million bbl.

Iraq needs to have enough crude in storage at the Turkish terminal before announcing a new tender. The total capacity of the tanks is 7.5 million bbl. SOMO held six tenders last year to sell Kirkuk crude.

Persistent acts of sabotage against Iraq's northern oil export pipelines and installations have kept exports from the north shut for most of the time since the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in 2003.

The bulk of Iraqi crude oil exports are from southern oil terminals on the Persian Gulf, which export around 1.5 million barrels a day.

Iraqi Oil Minister Hussein al-Shahristani said December 28 a new oil pipeline would begin operation within the next two to three days to help restore and sustain crude exports from the country's northern oil fields.

The first oil official also said Iraq has resumed crude exports from its southern oil fields after a suspension due to bad weather.


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