Q&A: Ashti Hawrami

Kurdistan's Minister of Natural Resources explains the history of the semi-autonomous region's export deal with Baghdad, why it all fell apart, and what it will take to re-start.
Ashti Hawrami, Iraqi Kurdistan's natural resources minister. (THAIER AL-SUDANI/Reuters)

ERBIL - As Kurdistan's minister of natural resources, Ashti Hawrami has served as the architect of the semi-autonomous region's oil strategy.

He negotiated the terms of a January 2011 agreement with his counterpart in the federal Oil Ministry, Abdul Karim Luaibi, which allowed Kurdistan to re-start its exports through Iraq's northern pipeline; and he cut those exports 14 months later, after concluding that Baghdad was not planning to send payments for Kurdistan's contractors.

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