Iraq oil sector transparency to be monitored

27 June 2011

Oil exports account for almost all government revenues

Iraq has agreed to verify the details of its oil industry and production with the Oslo-based Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), with its first report planned for October.

Baghdad is in the process of undertaking its first reconciliation report, which will be followed by a validation process, according to Eddie Rich, EITI’s regional director speaking to Radio Free Iraq on 24 June.

The EITI is an international organisation, which works to make both governments and the companies they work with more accountable for the oil and gas they produce, primarily by publishing the volume of hydrocarbons they produce and how much money they earn from them.

The Iraqi government has until August 2012 to “complete a reconciliation report, disseminate the report and have a validation, which is a quality assurance process to see how it has met EITI standards”, says Rich.

The procedure “will set up clearly credible figures about how much money is coming into Iraq from the sale of oil, and this gives a picture about how much the country has gained from these resources that belong to all the Iraqi people, not just the government.”

The EITI currently has 11 member countries. Another 24 countries have EITI candidate status, including Iraq. The country currently relies on crude oil exports for around 90 per cent of government revenues. In May, this amounted to $7.5bn as exports reached an average of 2.23 million barrels a day (MEED 23:6:11).

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