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Iraq exported less oil but earned more in 2010

by Staff Writers
Baghdad (AFP) Jan 26, 2011
Iraq exported slightly less crude in 2010 compared to the previous year but still earned 26.3 percent more due to an increase in global oil prices, an official statement said on Wednesday.

The country racked up $52.2 billion (38.1 billion euros) from oil exports last year, compared to $41.3 billion in 2009, the oil ministry said.

It said exports totalled 689.9 million barrels in 2010, compared to about 695.5 million barrels the previous year.

Global oil prices reached about $91 a barrel last year, compared to around $46 a barrel at the beginning of 2009.

Exports from Iraq's southern terminals, which have a current export capacity of about 1.8 million barrels per day (mbpd), stood at 524.1 million barrels last year, compared with 539.3 million barrels in 2009, the statement said.

Iraq's 2011 budget is based on an oil price of $73 dollars per barrel, with exports expected to total 2.25 mbpd, bringing in a total projected income this year of $66.7 billion dollars.

After flirting with $100 a barrel earlier this year, oil prices pulled back last week and in Asian trade on Wednesday New York's main contract, light sweet crude for March delivery, was at $86.41 per barrel.

Iraq sits atop oil reserves of 143 billion barrels, one of the world's largest. Oil exports account for the vast majority of the government's revenues.

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