World Bulletin/News Desk
The first cargo of Iraqi Kurdistan's crude oil has been sold on the international market, industry sources said, as the autonomous northern region ramps up trade the central government views as illegal.
The crude pumped from Genel Energy's Taq Taq oilfield was trucked over Iraq's northern border with Turkey and sold via tender for loading in April.
One trader said the cargo sold was 30,000 tonnes, which at Friday's market prices was worth around $22 million.
"I said we may have interest for this 30,000 tonne cargo and they (Powertrans) said we already sold it," said the prospective buyer.
S.E.T. Select Energy GmbH, an energy firm based in Hamburg, Germany, won the tender issued by intermediary Powertrans, according to two industry sources.
Select Energy did not immediately respond to email and telephone requests for comment.
The direct trade of crude and condensate by truck through Turkey has been rising steadily and now stands at close to 50,000 barrels per day (bpd). Exports of Taq Taq crude by truck are now more than 25,000 bpd, industry sources said.
A senior Iraqi official said last month the growing trade between the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) and Turkey threatens to split Iraq in two.
Oil lies at the heart of a long-running feud between the central government and Kurdistan. Baghdad says it alone has the authority to control exports and sign contracts, while the Kurds say their right to do so is enshrined in Iraq's federal constitution.
Iraqi Oil Minister Abdul Kareem Luaibi said in January the ministry of oil intended to sue Anglo-Turkish Genel Energy and other companies for the export of crude from Iraqi Kurdistan.
Genel Energy GENL.L expects to export oil by pipeline from its fields in Iraqi Kurdistan by 2014, regardless of a political impasse between Baghdad and the semi-autonomous region.
A number of major oil firms with interests in the south have opted not to participate in tenders offering Kurdish crude and condensate to avoid angering Baghdad.
That said, buyers of Kurdish condensate have so far faced few repercussions, with one notable exception - trading house Trafigura, which was banned from Iraq in December.
In any event, demand by smaller players and oil majors that do not have interests in southern Iraq is sufficient to absorb the growing volume on offer.
Russia has proposed from European Union Energy Commissioner Guenther Oettinger for a three-way meeting on gas between Russia
The southern African country, which ditched its hyper-inflated local currency in 2009, is facing a serious dollar crunch as a result of lack of foreign donor support and investment
The European Commission, in charge of policing member states' public finances, is expected to respond to French projections in early June after European parliamentary elections
The Australian purchase is a signal of confidence in the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) programme, which is about 70 percent over budget and years behind schedule
Executives say a plan is needed to tackle surging inflation as economic recession looms.
An agreement between the United States and Japan is crucial for setting the tone for other countries engaged in the TPP
The pipeline was closed as a precaution following the discovery of the fuel store
Unfair pricing which threatens U.S. domestic industry brings additional taxes to Turkish and Mexican companies.
With unemployment near 11 percent and growth sluggish, Valls must strike a balance between reassuring EU partners and investors about France's deficits
"Regardless of how the stand-off over Ukraine develops, one lesson is clear: excessive dependence on Russian energy makes Europe weak," Tusk argues
So far, rubber trees have been planted on only 270 hectares of land. But the project has already begun yielding rubber, said to be up to international quality standards.
Construction of the new complex comes at a time when the university is scrambling to expand its facilities to keep up with growing student numbers.
Rouhani says tackling inflation is a priority, and the rate has dropped below 35 percent as his administration introduced more conservative monetary and fiscal policies.
Long queues at public petrol stations in Sana'a, as private stations have little fuel to oil to sell
The Yue Yuen facilities in Gaobu comprise the company's biggest manufacturing centre. In addition to Adidas, it also makes shoes for Nike Inc , Saucony and other global brands
The British oil major has paid out billions of dollars in compensation under a settlement. Some claimants are satisfied, but others are irate that BP is now challenging aspects of the settlement