Iraq’s oil exports continue to follower their rollercoaster pattern of going up and down each month. The Oil Ministry reported that in February 2010 it exported an average of 2.083 million barrels a day, up from 1.926 million barrels in January. The State Department reported a slightly lower number for February at an average of 1.99 million barrels a day. Overall, oil production and exports hit a plateau in mid-2009. Oil production averaged 2.45 million barrels from May 2009 to February 2010, while exports stood at 1.94 million barrels a day. At the same time the price of Iraqi crude has steadily gone up as the world recovers from the recession. At its low point in January 2009 a barrel of Iraqi oil only sold for $36. One year later it was selling for $73.97. That has meant that Iraq has been earning more and more money, which it desperately needs for reconstruction, despite the up and down pattern of exports. The big questions now are when will the new oil deals signed with foreign companies begin to come into affect, will they be able to overcome the various bottlenecks in Iraq’s oil industry so that the country can begin to reach its potential, and will the money trickle down to the average Iraqi?
Iraq Avg. Oil Production/Exports Per Day (State Dept.)
Aswat al-Iraq, “$4.4b Iraq’s oil revenues in Jan.,” 2/23/10
Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs, “Iraq Status Report,” 3/3/10
Reuters, “Iraq oil exports rise in Feb to 2.083 mln bpd,” 2/28/10
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