Iraqi Kurdistan to make November payments to oil companies: official

HEWLÊR-Erbil, Kurdistan region ‘Iraq’,— Iraq’s Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) authorized the release of payments to oil exporting companies for November in line with payments made in the past two months, an official close to the minister of natural resources said on Monday. “The KRG continues to adhere to its payment policy to allow for the exporting companies to cover their ongoing costs and maintain production,” the official said in an emailed statement. “The amounts of monthly payments will improve when export increases and or the oil prices recover from their present level.” The official did not specify an amount for the payments. Kurdistan said in September it had allocated $75 million of revenue from its independent crude sales to oil exporting companies that had gone unpaid for months. The figure represents a fraction of what international oil firms in the autonomous region say they are owed, but some investors have said the promise of regular payments has reassured them at a time when weak crude prices are putting additional pressure on companies’ balance sheets. Genel Energy said last month it was owed $409 million as of Sept. 30 for oil exported from its fields in Kurdistan. By the end of the second quarter of this year, DNO said the KRG owed it a sum approaching $1 billion and Gulf Keystone Petroleum $238 million for oil sales and other costs, though small payments have been made since then.