Iraq’s crude-oil production has risen to 3.2 million barrels a day and will increase as planned to 3.4 million barrels a day by year’s end Deputy Prime Minister for Energy Affairs Hussain al-Shahristani said.
The country’s output has now surpassed that of Iran and Kuwait, al-Shahristani told reporters today in Baghdad. The figure would be the highest level in more than 20 years.
Crude oil pumped from fields in the northern Kurdish region “remains less than required, at a total of 116,000 barrels since Aug. 8,” when pumping from the area resumed, he said. The semi-autonomous area halted pumping for export April 1 following a dispute with the central government over payments to foreign companies. The requirement for the region is 175,000 barrels a day, al-Shahristani said.
“Payments to foreign companies will be made once we receive the required documents on the required levels,” al-Shahristani said.
Iraq will “terminate business with any foreign energy company that violates Iraqi laws,” he said, referring to contracts signed by overseas firms such as Exxon Mobile Corp. and Total SA with the Kurdish region, separately from the central government.
“In the last few days, we met with representatives from Exxon Mobil and they confirmed the commitment of the company that they would not start any field development work in Kurdistan,” al-Shahristani said.