Amidst the continued conflict and disarray in Iraq, south Kurdistan’s minister of natural resources. Ashti Hawrami, yesterday announced the completion of a link between the Kirkuk oilfields and the Kurdistan’s Regional Government’s (KRG) recently-built pipeline to Turkey. This follows last week’s military gains by Kurdish peshmarga forces which took control Kirkuk to prevent it from falling to ISIS jihadists after the Iraqi army abandoned the city.
The link connects the Kirkuk Avana dome to the Khurmala dome from which the Kurdish pipeline runs. It could enable Kurds to export Kirkuk crude oil without reliance on Baghdad, strengthening the economic foundations for a potential independent Kurdish state.
“That blue line was finished,” Hawrami told a conference in London, pointing to a map of the pipelines.
Hawrami also said that he expected to see two more tankers loaded this week with Kurd crude oil delivered from the new Kurdish pipeline to the Turkish port of Ceyhan.