5,809 Policy 02/09/2022 19:23 Baghdad today – Baghdad The Kurdistan Democratic Party announced, on Friday, the existence of a preliminary agreement with the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan to replace its candidate for the presidency of the Republic, Barham Salih, indicating that the next president will be a consensus as soon as the Shiite crisis ends. The leader of the party, Wafa Muhammad Karim, said in an interview with (Baghdad Today) that “there is an implicit agreement with the National Union to change Barham Salih and choose a compromise candidate for the presidency in the event that it is agreed to hold the parliament session.”
He added, “We insist not to pass Barham Salih to run the presidency in the next stage, but everything is possible in politics, and we are waiting for whether we will go to elect the president of the republic and assign the prime minister, or are we heading to dissolve parliament.” The political process suffers from a deep political crisis as a result of the Sadrist movement’s insistence on dissolving parliament, while the coordinating framework confirms its right to form the next government.
Shafaq News / An economic report revealed, today, Friday, that oil companies operating in the Kurdistan Region requested assistance from Washington to defuse the crisis between Baghdad and Erbil regarding its work and the flow of oil to Turkey, while indicating that Turkey’s position is “unclear” until this moment on the issue, A company operating in the region confirmed that it contacted four governments in this regard.
“The oil companies operating in the Kurdistan Region have asked the United States to help defuse the growing tension between the federal government and the regional government,” Reuters news agency said.
Reuters based its report, which was seen by Shafak News Agency, on “a message I have seen, and from three sources, saying that this American intervention is necessary in order to ensure the continued flow of oil through northern Iraq to Turkey to prevent the latter from increasing oil shipments from Iran and Russia.”
According to this message and the sources, “the economy of the Kurdistan Region may be at risk of collapse if it loses its revenues from oil sales.”
The Reuters report stated that “relations were strained last February when the Federal Court considered that the oil and gas law related to regulating the oil industry in Kurdistan is unconstitutional,” noting that “after the ruling was issued, the federal government strengthened its efforts with the aim of controlling export revenues from Erbil”.
According to a copy of the letter seen by Reuters, “Before the ruling was issued, the Dallas-based company (HKN Energy) wrote to the US ambassadors in Baghdad and Ankara, specifically last January, asking for mediation. The United States is involved in a separate case dating back to 2014 related to the Iraqi-Turkish pipeline (ITP).
The report indicated that “Baghdad” claims that Turkey violated the “ITP” agreement by allowing the transit of Kurdistan Regional Government exports, which Baghdad considers illegal, through the pipeline to the Turkish port of Ceyhan.
The report indicated that “the Iraqi Oil Ministry said that the last session to consider the case was held in Paris last July, and that the International Chamber of Commerce will announce its final decision in the coming months.”
“Reuters” quoted three sources as saying that “the possible next steps on the part of Turkey are still unclear if the ruling is issued in favor of Baghdad, which is a likely possibility.”
The agency quoted a representative of the company, who asked not to be identified, as saying that “at least one other oil company has moved continuously with higher authorities in four governments concerned, directly and indirectly, in order to encourage participation.”
Reuters noted that “other operators in the Kurdistan Region, “General Energy” and “Chevron” refused to comment on the arbitration case, while “DNO” and “Gulf Keystone” did not respond to requests from Reuters for comment.
Oil drums are in danger
According to the letter obtained by “Reuters” and addressed by “HKN” to the ambassadors of the United States, “stopping the flow of oil through (ITP) will lead to the collapse of the economy of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.”
Neither the Ministry of Natural Resources in the Kurdistan Regional Government nor the Ministry of Oil in Baghdad have commented on requests from “Reuters” to comment on the news.
The report pointed out that “(ITP) has a pumping capacity of 900,000 barrels per day of crude, which represents about 1% of the daily global demand for oil, through the State Marketing Company (SOMO) as well as the KRG. 500 are currently being pumped 1,000 barrels per day from the fields of northern Iraq.
According to analysts, “the companies will withdraw from the region unless the work environment improves.”
“With the deteriorating security situation, a group of small and medium-sized companies moved to achieve US involvement to help deter attacks on energy infrastructure and enhance security in general,” the report stated.
The report, quoting sources concerned with the case, stated, “These companies also endorsed letters written by members of the US Congress to Secretary of State Anthony Blinken in August, urging them to engage in high-level engagement with Erbil and Baghdad with the aim of protecting the stability of the Kurdistan Region’s economy and ensuring Iraq is free from interference. Iranian”.
faded American interest
The report quoted US State Department spokesman Ned Price as saying on August 16 that “the differences between Baghdad and Erbil concern them, but the United States encourages dialogue.”
The report pointed out that “the US State Department summoned the American law firm (Elkins & Vision), which represents the Iraqi Ministry of Oil, in order to review the data on the dispute over (ITP) in July.”
The report continued, quoting an informed source as saying that “it is likely that two more meetings will be held in Baghdad and Washington.”
While the US State Department declined to comment, industry experts said they “believe that US intervention is not likely and may not help anyway.”
The report quoted Raad Al-Qadri, managing director of energy, climate and sustainability in the “Eurasia Group”, as saying that “the United States separated from Iraq during the past decade, and that pressure from Washington or other governments, will not resolve the issues between Baghdad and the Kurds.”
A Kurdish official told Reuters last August that “the regional government asked the United States to strengthen its defense capabilities,” but he indicated that he was “not optimistic because the most important priority for the United States is to revive the nuclear agreement with Iran.”
The financial advisor to the Prime Minister, Mazhar Muhammad Salih, confirmed today, Thursday, that the merits of the General Budget Law for the year 2023 are complete, while indicating the possibility of approving the 2022 budget immediately, if the legislative environment allows it.
Saleh told the official news agency, “The provisions of Chapter Three of the amended Federal Financial Management Law No. 6 of 2019 are concerned with preparing and approving the legislative rules for the federal general budget law for the next year, which begins its work at the beginning of July of each year by initiating preparations for estimating expenditures and revenues and managing The deficit or surplus of the draft federal budget law for the coming year.
He added, “Accordingly, the ceiling of its expenditures, both operational and current expenditures and investment spending, is determined through what the Higher Committee for Budget Strategy, headed by the Minister of Finance and a large number of undersecretaries of ministries, general managers and experts from various state facilities, is responsible for drawing up the general budget policy. The annual budget and the preparation of the draft law, the annual budget, which is accompanied by the fiscal policy document, the macroeconomic reality and future document, the required growth indicators, and the approved economic development policy.
He pointed out that “according to the timeline, the draft law and the strategy attached to it for the next three years must be discussed in the Ministerial Council for Economy in the first month of September, and the file is referred to the Council of Ministers for approval of the draft general budget law and its appendices, and then presented in an integrated manner to the legislators in the House of Representatives in the month October of each year in order to vote on it to legislate it.
He continued, “There is a draft or an integrated project for the budget for the year 2022 that can be legislated immediately if the legislative environment allows it,” noting that “the merits of the general budget law for the year 2023 are to a large extent complete with some simple legal adjustments in the matter of managing the surplus through the fund.” The sovereign stipulated in Article 19 of the effective Financial Management Law, as well as the agreement on the price of a barrel of oil for the purposes of calculating the return from it in the year 2023, in light of the development of energy markets and the demand for oil in the world.
He pointed out that “oil revenues constitute more than 90% of the total public revenues in the budget, as well as what is expected of non-oil revenues in the next fiscal year.”