Iraq 2011 budget proposal based on $73 oil

Iraqi officials proposed a 2011 budget based on a $73-per-barrel oil price and exports of 2.3 million barrels a day, an oil ministry spokesman said on Sunday. The export figure includes 150,000 bpd from the semi-autonomous Kurdish region, spokesman Assim Jihad said. Exports were halted last year after a dispute between Kurdish officials and the central government and have yet to resume. The figures were agreed by an Iraqi delegation that included Oil Minister Hussain al-Shahristani and Finance Minister Bayan Jabor, as well as central bank representatives, during a meeting with World Bank officials to discuss Iraq’s budget, Jihad said. ‘There was an agreement on the price of oil in the 2011 budget of $73 and exports of 2.3 million (barrels per day or bpd) including 150,000 from Kurdistan oilfields, which were halted and hopefully will be resumed in the coming period. ‘The expected revenues from oil will be around 60 billion dollars next year if the prices of oil stay as they are … and the deficit will be $25 billion for next year,’ Jihad said. Iraq is trying to rebuild after years of war and international economic sanctions. It depends on oil revenue to fund about 95 per cent of its budget. The OPEC producer has signed deals with global oil firms that could boost its output capacity to 12 million bpd from the current 2.5 million, potentially rivaling top producer Saudi Arabia. The assumed exports of 2.3 million bpd would represent a significant boost over current exports, which fell to 1.9 million bpd in October from 2.02 million the previous month. Jihad said Iraq’s budget deficit was expected to ‘disappear’ by 2013. ((21 NOV 2010))












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