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23 January 2001  
Oil- for- Food Background Information


Update for the period
13 - 19 January 2001

A pricing mechanism is now in place for the purchase of Iraqi crude oil during the month of February under the United Nations oil-for-food programme.  Iraq sells two types of crude oil – Basrah Light and Kirkuk, to three markets – the United States, Europe and the Far East.  The prices, proposed by the Iraqi State Oil Marketing Organization (SOMO), have been approved by the Security Council’s 661 sanctions Committee for Iraq, on the recommendation of the United Nations oil overseers.

During the week of 13 to 19 January, Iraq exported 5.7 million barrels of crude oil through three loadings at Mina al-Bakr terminal, earning an estimated €132 million (euros) in revenue.  Although, once again, there were no activities at Ceyhan terminal in this period, loadings did resume on Sunday, 21 January, after a three-week pause.  The figures for Ceyhan loadings will be reflected in the subsequent weekly update.

In current phase IX, which began on 6 December 2000, Iraq has exported 28.1 million barrels of oil for an estimated €558 million (euros) in revenue.

Eight new contracts were approved by the oil overseers and the 661 Committee for the purchase of Iraqi oil during the week leading to 19 January.  These were for 11 million barrels of Kirkuk crude destined for the United States and European markets and 19.5 million barrels of Basrah Light for the United States, European and Far Eastern markets.

Presently, 168.1 million barrels of oil are to be lifted against 76 approved contracts, comprising more than 101.4 million barrels of Basrah Light and 66.6 million barrels of Kirkuk.

Iraq has exported over 2,234 million barrels of oil since the beginning of the programme on 10 December 1996, earning an estimated total revenue of over $38.6 billion and €558 million (euros).

In phases IV to VIII, the Committee has now approved over $10.3 billion worth of contracts for humanitarian supplies, while an additional $3.1 billion worth have been processed by the Office of the Iraq Programme (OIP) under “fast track” procedures, based on pre-approved lists of supplies.  The Committee has also approved 2,344 contracts worth $1.27 billion for the purchase of oil industry spare parts and equipment, with another 81 contracts, worth about $55 million have been "fast tracked" by OIP.

The total value of contracts placed on hold by the 661 Committee as at 19 January was $3.15 billion, consisting of $2.7 billion for humanitarian supplies and $435 million for oil industry spare parts and equipment.    

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Produced for media and public information – not an official United Nations Document
For further information please contact Hasmik Egian, OIP - NY, 1.212.963.4341