The total value of oil exports was $664m during the first half of 2009, down 75 per cent on $2.7bn between January and June 2008, according to figures published by the Central Bank of Yemen on 10 August.

Oil revenues account for about 75 per cent of the government’s budget.

The Yemeni government exported a total of 12.8 million barrels of oil during the first half of 2009, while domestic consumption topped 12.6 million barrels.

The government’s share of all the oil produced in Yemen in the first six months of the year – 25.4 million barrels – was 9.3 million barrels or 27 per cent down on the same period of 2008 when Sanaa’s share of domestic production was 34.7 million barrels.

Yemen has several exploration and production-sharing agreements with international oil companies (IOCs).

According to UK oil major BP, Yemen’s total output was 305,000 barrels a day (b/d) in 2008, down from a peak of 457,000 b/d in 2002.

Sanaa currently faces a cash crisis and has asked Riyadh for a $2bn bailout (MEED 7:9:09).