Iraq has disclosed detailed information about the US$ 41 billion in revenue it received from oil and gas exports in 2009. Iraq’s disclosure of the figures follows the country’s commitment to the EITI standard, the global standard for transparency of resource revenues. The revenues are published in Iraq’s first EITI Report, which detailed production figures and revenues from the sales of oil abroad in 2009.
Clare Short, Chair of the international EITI Board welcomed the report saying, “Through the launch of its first EITI report, Iraq has taken a significant step towards transparency in its all-important oil sector. With transparency of the payments for its oil and gas, Iraq’s citizens can see how much the government receives from the country’s vast natural resources and start to ensure that Iraq’s resource wealth is properly managed. Greater transparency will help Iraq overcome some of the many challenges it is facing.”
“The Government of Iraq is determined to keep supporting, publishing, and improving IEITI reports. This is not only for the sake of decent international reputation for the country and its government, but also with the aim of enabling our people to be well-informed and to participate in directing the way its revenues are received and used,“ said Alaa Mohie El-Deen, Secretary General of Iraqi EITI.
The Iraq EITI Report contains a comparison and reconciliation of the oil volumes from oil producing companies with oil exports from the Ministry of Oil. It also contains a reconciliation of revenues reported from the State Oil Marketing Organization (SOMO) and buyers of Iraqi oil abroad. Asian countries are the main destination of Iraqi oil, accounting for 44 % of total Iraqi exports.
Following UN Security Council Resolution 1483, all export revenues from petroleum products and natural gas in Iraq are deposited into an Oil Proceed Receipt Account (OPRA) at the Federal Reserve Bank New York (FRBNY). A third reconciliation of revenues reported from the Central Bank of Iraq and the FRBNY could not be completed for this EITI Report because the FRBNY did not provide the required data despite repeated requests.
Revenues from oil exports, which in 2009 equaled around 40% of Iraq’s GDP, are projected to grow considerably in the near term. Total reported oil production in 2009 was 695 million barrels. In 2012, Iraq’s oil exports are projected to increase to 950 million barrels.