2007 Exports Rose 9.2% for Iraq, But Northern Pipeline Closed Again

Oil production is far from being back to normal in Iraq. While the war-torn country experienced a 9.2% increase in 2007 oil exports, the 1.6 million bbl/d it produces is short of the estimated 2.5 million bbl/d it produced before the U.S.-led invasion of 2003.

The Washington Post reported that the increase in exports is "largely because improved security allowed pumping to resume through a pipeline from northern oil fields."

However, Neftegaz news reported on the morning of Jan. 24 that Iraq had suspended crude oil exports from its northern region due to the damage of a pipeline. The Kirkuk oil fields pipeline exports oil to Turkey's Ceyhan port.

According to the report, Kirkuk crude oil stores are already at a "very low" point. A source told Dow Jones that the shutdown was due to a "fault at one point of the line."

The pipeline is under repair, but there is no word as to how long the repairs will take.

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