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March oil exports slump by 200,000 bpd due to pipeline halt

Iraq's northern exports remain offline in the aftermath of a landmark arbitration win against Turkey, with restart timing still unclear.
Oil tanks at Turkey's Mediterranean port of Ceyhan, which is run by state-owned Petroleum Pipeline Corporation (BOTAS). (UMIT BEKTAS/Reuters)

Iraq’s nationwide oil sales fell sharply in March to 3.534 million barrels per day (bpd) from 3.738 million bpd in February* as the shutdown of the pipeline through Turkey knocked out nearly half a million barrels per day of exports in the final week of the month.

Northern exports remain offline in the aftermath of an arbitration ruling that found Turkey had breached a treaty with Iraq by facilitating the Kurdistan Regional Government's (KRG) independent oil sales. The extension of the shutdown past first week of April is likely to be reflected in lower export volumes this month, with reduced flows likely to continue in May after Baghdad agreed to join seven other producers in the OPEC-plus alliance in cutting production to support global oil prices.

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