SPM stopped, investigation ended

Iraq's new export system has been shut for maintenance after loading one tanker, while the IG has concluded an internal corruption review related to the Leighton contract.
A tugboat maneuvers near an oil tanker at the Al-Basra Oil Terminal. Iraq needs more export capacity, and the first stage of a new export facility is has just opened. (BEN LANDO/Iraq Oil Report)

BAGHDAD - "Until now, it is not operating. There is maintenance," said a top Oil Ministry official. "They only filled one tanker."

The official stressed the latest delay wasn't a major concern, but rather the result of normal adjustments that must be made to a massive and vital new system. Similar maintenance was necessary after a Feb. 12 inauguration ceremony at the Fao Peninsula storage depot in southernmost Iraq, when tests revealed leaks in the new pipeline feeding the SPM, along the seabed portion.

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