Kurdistan, Turkey announce bilateral energy plans

Iraq's semi-autonomous Kurdish region detailed oil, gas and downstream plans that rely on Turkey, not Baghdad.
Kurdistan, Turkey announce bilateral energy plans
Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yildiz (L) and KRG Minister of Natural Resources Ashti Hawrami at a press conference in Erbil, May 21, 2012, after announcing joint cooperation on oil, gas and fuel exports. (AZAD LASHKARI/Reuters)

ERBIL - In a stark assertion of its autonomy, the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) has announced a wide range of prospective bilateral energy export arrangements with Turkey — including oil and gas pipelines and refining agreements.

Most immediately, Kurdistan is preparing to export crude oil to Turkey, which has agreed to refine it and send back the fuel. Such a trade would violate a red line for the Iraqi central government, which claims sole authority to export the country's oil.

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