Plan to truck oil from Iraq’s Kirkuk to Iran delayed by security concerns

Reuters – A plan to truck oil from Iraq’s northern Kirkuk fields to Iran cannot be fully implemented at this stage due to security concerns, the head of the Iran-Iraq chamber of commerce said on Monday.

Iraq and Iran have agreed to swap up to 60,000 barrels per day of crude produced from Kirkuk for Iranian oil to be delivered to southern Iraq.

About 30,000 barrels per day of crude is to be trucked to Iran’s Kermanshah refinery in the first instance.

“Iran is facing some problems to implement the agreement due to security issues,” said Hamid Hosseini, the Iranian secretary-general of the Iran-Iraq Chamber of Commerce.

“Iran does not have X-ray machines to scan the trucks coming from Iraq,” Hosseini was quoted as saying by ISNA news agency.

He said Iran was in talks with Iraq to use their X-ray facilities.

Iraqi Oil Minister Jabar al-Luaibi said last month that exporting oil from the Kirkuk fields to Iran would start before the end of January.

Iraq and Iran plan to build a pipeline to carry the oil from Kirkuk to avoid having to use trucks. The planned pipeline could replace the existing export route from Kirkuk via Turkey and the Mediterranean.

Reporting by Bozorgmehr Sharafedin; editing by Jason Neely