Parliament backs increase in discount on oil and gas sales to Jordan

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By Shaymaa Adel

Azzaman, January 16, 2014

Iraqi deputies say they will approve a government request to increase the discount on oil exports to Jordan to $20 per barrel from $18, according to the Oil and Energy Commission at the Iraqi parliament.

Besides oil, Iraq supplies Jordan with natural gas, liquefied petroleum gas and heavy fuel.

The quantities exported currently are way below what Iraq used to ship to the Arab country prior to 2003 when a U.S.-led invasion of the country toppled the former president Saddam Hussein.

Under Saddam Jordan received all its energy needs from Iraq – about 100,000 barrels of oil per day – at almost half the price on international markets.

The current volume is about one tenth of the quantities Iraq used to deliver to Jordan but under a new agreement, the commission said, Iraq would increase energy deliveries to Jordan.

“The parliament supports government’s move … as part of efforts to boost ties with Arab countries and consolidate trade exchange,” said Khalilil Zaydan, a commission member.

Iraq currently exports 15,000 barrels of oil per day via truck tankers. Prior to 2003 a fleet of 3000 trucks ferried Iraqi crude to Jordan.

The countries are considering constructing a pipeline that will link Jordan’s refinery and its Aqaba port to oil fields in Iraq.