Workers adjust a valve of an oil pipe in Tawke oil field near Duhok. Photo: KRG
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region - Two major oil and gas companies operating in the Kurdistan Region’s oilfields confirmed that they had received their February 2017 gross payments from the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) for oil deliveries to the export market.
The Norwegian oil and gas operator (DNO) announced it had received an amount of $41.40 million from the KRG “as payment towards February 2017 crude oil deliveries to the export market from the Tawke field.”
DNO added that they received funds “to be shared pro-rata by DNO and partner Genel Energy PLC, including $34.73 million toward monthly deliveries and $6.68 million toward recovery of outstanding receivables.”
An average of 110,803 barrels of oil per day (bpd) were produced at Tawke oilfield in February, of which 110,641 were exported through Turkey’s Ceyhan port, it added.
Genel Energy (PLC) published its report as well on Wednesday, also confirming the Tawke field payment "reflects full settlement of the invoiced amount for February 2017 oil sales, and includes $34.73 million towards monthly entitlement and $6.68 million towards recovery of historical receivables."
Genel added that it had received another $11 million from the KRG as its share from oil sales from the Taq Taq field during February.
Earlier this week an official from the KRG's Oil and Natural Resources Ministry said its debts owed to oil companies have decreased by 25 percent as the region has paid back an estimated $1 billion to oil companies over the past eight months.
Dr. Aras Khoshnaw head of the Kurdistan Strategic Investigation and Information Center told Rudaw that loans the KRG had borrowed from the oil companies since 2014 have been reduced from $4 billion to just $3 billion as the KRG has started paying back its debts over the past eight months.
Khoshnaw added the process of paying the companies their gross payments has encouraged the companies who had oil agreements with the KRG to return and resume their work in oil fields.
The Iraqi government during the Nouri al-Maliki premiership cut the Kurdistan Region’s national budget share in early 2014, a move which forced the KRG to borrow large amounts of money from oil companies or delay their payments in a bid to offset its budget deficit to meet the region’s internal needs, notably the salaries of civil servants.
The KRG signed two agreements in early October and November last year with two international financial institutions — Deloitte, and Ernst and Young — to audit the region’s oil and gas sector.