Amman: Iraq's revenue from exporting crude oil for the first four months of 2011 is expected to reach some $26.7 billion (Dh98.07 billion), a record high since the country started exporting its oil decades ago, the head of its State Oil Marketing Organisation, or SOMO, said yesterday.
Falah Al Amri said revenue from oil sales in April is expected to reach $7.4 billion, the highest ever monthly figure, compared with $7.16 billion in March. He said SOMO sold the oil in April at a price ranging between $112 and $113 a barrel, compared with $107.13 a barrel the previous month.
But Iraqi crude oil exports fell 0.8 per cent in April to 2.141 million barrels per day (bpd), from 2.158 million bpd the previous month, due to bad weather, Al Amri told Dow Jones Newswires by telephone from Baghdad.
Some 1.656 million bpd were exported in April from southern terminals in Basra, compared with 1.687 million bpd exported the previous month. Some 485,000 bpd were exported from Kirkuk and Kurdish oil fields in April, compared with 471,000 bpd pumped in March.
April exports averaged 2.141 million barrels a day, Al Amri said. He had said on April 3 that Iraq generated $7.1 billion from crude exports in March. Exports averaged 2.195 million bpd that month at $106.50 a barrel, he had said.
Iraq's government depends on oil for most of its revenue and is seeking foreign investors to help boost crude production after years of war and sanctions. The country plans to award a new batch of licences to explore for and develop oil, its fourth licensing round since the US-led invasion in 2003.
Exports from the port of Basra averaged 1.656 million bpd in April, Al Amri said. About two-thirds of Iraq's crude exports went to customers in Asia. It shipped the remaining third of its oil from the Mediterranean port of Ceyhan in Turkey.
Meanwhile, South Korea has signed a pact with Iraq securing the right to be among the first to receive at least 250,000 bpd of crude oil during any emergency that upsets the global supply-demand balance, the Ministry of Knowledge Economy said recently.
The pact significantly enhances South Korea's energy security by guaranteeing a stable supply. The amount is close to about 10 per cent of South Korea's daily crude imports of 2.4 million barrels.