Al-Sudani: Iraq, with its production of more than 4 million barrels per day of oil, still imports its derivatives

Al-Sudani: Iraq, with its production of more than 4 million barrels per day of oil, still imports its derivatives

Despite Iraq producing over four million barrels of crude oil per day, the country has been importing oil derivatives for decades. On Friday, Prime Minister Muhammad Shiaa Al-Sudani criticized this policy and emphasized the steps taken to reach the goal of becoming self-sufficient in oil derivatives by the middle of next year at the latest.

This was said in a speech he gave at the Al-Shamal Refinery’s inauguration ceremony in Baiji. The refinery had been shut down for more than ten years before it was restored.

Al-Sudani stated during his speech: “We went to this refinery in May 2023 to see it for ourselves and to learn about the machines and equipment that had been recovered. These came about on the initiative of Mr. Baran Ahmed Younis, an Iraqi citizen, and with assistance from the Kurdistan Regional Government of Iraq.”

Even with its daily output of over 4 million barrels, he continued, Iraq continues to import oil derivatives, continuing a decades-old policy. With this accomplishment, he stated, “we are close to securing the country’s entire needs for derivatives, no later than the middle of next year,” and “the heroes surprise us before this date.”

Al-Sudani also stated that the actual reform is to cease importing oil derivatives since doing so will save billions of dollars that can be used for other economic and service-related purposes.

He emphasized that well-researched strategies and programs that emphasize how crucial it is to invest this money in a way that generates the highest returns have positioned the oil and gas industry at the top of the government’s priority list.

The Prime Minister continued, saying, “We went to projects implemented for the first time, like investing in associated gas,” adding that “national effort is in multiple site and field to end gas burning within a time frame of 3-5 years,” and that “international companies are working today.”

Al-Sudani went on to say: As part of a new strategy we are implementing to invest oil in the petrochemical and manufacturing industries, we are developing the plan for investment projects both inside and outside of Iraq. in order to maximize return.

The Baiji refinery, which can reportedly handle 310,000 barrels per day, is said to be the biggest in Iraq. In May 2014, after seizing control of the Baiji neighborhood, ISIS took control of the refinery.

Following the district of Baiji’s release from ISIS control in 2015, the refinery lost machinery and equipment because armed groups involved in the nearly year-long military campaign against the group were suspected of stealing and reselling them.

It was declared by Prime Minister Muhammad Shiaa Al-Sudani that gadgets and equipment that had been taken from the Baiji refinery had been found.