Iraq’s September oil exports peaked the highest in three decades with about 2.6 million barrels per day, earning the exchequer $8.4 billion, figures disclosed by the oil ministry said on Sunday.
According to the figures compiled earlier this week, oil exports in August were slightly lower at 2.564 million bpd and brought in $ 8.445 billion at an average price of $107 per barrel.
The volumes exported in September mark the highest export level in over three decades, according to the ministry.
Iraq says it has plans in place to hike its oil exports to 2.9 million bpd in 2013 by increasing production, which already stands at over 3 million bpd, to 3.4 million bpd by the end of the current year.
Iraq’s oil and gas reserves are among the largest in the world, totalling estimates of 143.1 billion barrels of oil and 3.2 trillion cubic metres of gas.
The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), an autonomous body established in northern Iraq, is also planning to build an oil pipeline to Turkey with a capacity of 1 million bpd by 2015 and 2 million bpd by 2019.
KRG natural resources minister Ashti Hawrami said construction of the short spur lines from producing fields is underway and funding had been arranged for a main export line to carry crude from these fields to the border.
Plans are underway to launch a construction tender for the project, he said making it clear that the pipeline will be an Iraqi pipeline.
“It will be for the benefit of all nations, all the Iraqi people and all the Turkish people,” Hawrami said.
He insisted that the new pipeline would be Iraq’s property on the Iraqi side of the border and Turkey’s on the Turkish side.
In another development, reports suggested that Baghdad and Amman reached a deal under which Iraq will increase its exports to neighboring Jordan from 10,000 bpd to 15,000 bpd at a discounted price of $18 per barrel.
Jordan imports 95% of its energy needs is seeking alternative energy sources after a string of bomb attacks on an Egyptian pipeline conveying gas to Israel and Jordan has caused repeated cuts to gas supplies since last year.
Jordan imports most of its oil needs, about 170,000 bpd, from Saudi Arabia.