Rosneft Not Obliged to Report on Iraqi Kurdistan Projects – Spokesman

Rosneft Not Obliged to Report on Iraqi Kurdistan Projects – Spokesman
Sputnik/ Ramil SitdikovBusiness17:00 30.10.2017(updated 17:14 30.10.2017) Get short URL1649


Russia’s Rosneft has commented on the Iraqi Oil Ministry’s request to clarify its position on contracts with Iraqi Kurdistan voiced by the ministry’s spokesman Asem Jihad.

“We are working, as [CEO] Igor Sechin noted, we are discussing options for cooperation on oil with them, issues related to Iraqi Kurdistan, to the autonomy, but we do not have to answer to anyone … They sent us a request, but we do not understand what else we have to clarify. We have already clarified everything that was necessary,” spokesman Mikhail Leontyev told Sputnik on Monday.

READ MORE: Why Baghdad-Kurdistan Conflict is Unlikely to Significantly Affect Oil Market

The statements come after Iraqi Oil Ministry spokesman Asem Jihad told Sputnik that the ministry had asked Rosneft to clarify its position on contracts with Iraqi Kurdistan amid the intensified tensions in the region after the independence referendum. According to him, during the Iraqi delegation’s last visit to Moscow, the Russian energy minister had promised to sign contracts with the region’s companies through the mediation of the federal government and the Ministry of Oil.

The development followed after Rosneft and the Iraqi Kurdistan government had announced the launch of joint use of an oil pipeline in the Kurdish autonomy, with Moscow’s stake about 60 percent.

READ MORE: Russian Rosneft, Iraqi Kurdistan Announce Joint Exploitation of Kurdish Pipeline

The September 25 independence referendum in oil-rich regions of Iraqi Kurdistan and Kirkuk led to a military operation driven by the Iraqi government forces, resulting in the latter getting under control of a number of oil fields and administration. Following the military actions in the area, the oil market reacted with a 1.75 percent hike in oil prices to $58.17 per barrel.

The Iraqi Oil Ministry spokesman Asem Jihad has previously told Sputnik that the ministry had agreed to establish an expert group with UK oil and gas company BP to assess the situation on fields in Kirkuk after their October 23 meeting in Baghdad.