Gas pipeline stalled by intra-Kurdish political rifts

KRG leaders have been touting the potential for major gas exports to Turkey and Europe, but worsening political rivalries are so far preventing pipeline construction.
An engineer looks out over gas processing facilities at the Khor Mor field, which is operated by the Emirati companies Crescent Petroleum and Dana Gas, in 2013. (JACOB RUSSELL/Iraq Oil Report/Metrography)

SULAIMANIYA/ERBIL - The Iraqi Kurdistan region's fractious internal politics are threatening to derail the construction of a pipeline that could enable future natural gas exports to Turkey — a potential setback for Europe as it seeks to reduce dependence on Russian energy following the invasion of Ukraine.

The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) has already signed a contract with the Iraqi Kurdish company KAR Group to expand and extend an existing domestic gas pipeline network, but work on the ground can only move forward with the permission of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) — the political party that controls the eastern half of Iraqi Kurdistan, including the semi-autonomous region's most important gas fields.

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