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Turkey targets Iraqi oil flows rise to over 1 mln bpd

Loading data showed flows through the pipeline were running at around 450,000 bpd earlier this year but have risen sharply in recent weeks

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Oil flows through Iraqi Kurdistan's pipeline carrying Kirkuk and Kurdish oil to Turkey's Mediterranean coast have risen to 650,000 barrels per day (bpd) and are targeted to exceed one million bpd, Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yildiz said.

Loading data showed flows through the pipeline were running at around 450,000 bpd earlier this year but have risen sharply in recent weeks.

"In March last year some 2,300 bpd of crude oil had been coming to Turkey from northern Iraq. Now it has reached 650,000 bpd," Yildiz said on Sunday.

"This level is a significant portion of Iraq's total daily exports of 2.7 million barrels. Our target is to exceed one million barrels," he added.

Under a deal struck last December between Iraqi Kurdistan and the central government in Baghdad, Kurds committed to export an average of 550,000 bpd from Turkey's Mediterranean port of Ceyhan via Iraq's state oil marketer SOMO in 2015, in return for the reinstatement of budget payments.

Oil exports from Iraq's Kirkuk field via Ceyhan had stopped for months last year, when the Baghdad-controlled federal pipeline came under attack by Islamic State militants.