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12 February 2002  

Oil-for-Food Background Information


Weekly Update

(2 - 8 February 2002)

The Executive Director of the Iraq Programme, Benon V. Sevan, left Baghdad on 10 February, concluding his three-week working visit to Iraq. Prior to his departure, Mr. Sevan met the Vice-President of the Republic of Iraq, Taha Yasin Ramadan. At a press conference, immediately after that meeting, Mr. Sevan expressed overall satisfaction with the outcome of his visit. He told journalists that during his meetings with Iraqi Government Ministers concerned, including the Ministers of Foreign Affairs, Oil, Trade, Health, Interior, Higher Education, Agriculture and the Commissioner of Electricity, as well as with representatives of the United Nations agencies and programmes involved in the implementation of the oil-for-food programme, he had reviewed a number of issues, some of which would require further consultations with the Secretary-General and others, with the Security Council. Mr. Sevan is scheduled to brief the Council on 26 February.

In the week ending 8 February, Iraq exported 11.5 million barrels of oil under the programme, registering a drop of two million barrels over the previous week’s total, netting an estimated €224 million (euros) or $196 million in revenue, at current prices and rate of exchange. Of the total seven liftings from the two authorized loading terminals of Mina al-Bakr and Ceyhan, five were from the former, with 9.8 million barrels of oil, and two from the latter, with 1.7 million barrels. The average price of Iraqi crude oil during the week was approximately €19.50 or $16.90 per barrel.

During the week, the United Nations oil overseers approved five new oil purchase contracts for six million barrels of Basrah Light and 4.5 million barrels Kirkuk crude, bringing the total number of approved such contracts in current phase XI of the programme to 120, covering 291 million barrels of oil, including 167 million barrels of Basrah Light and 124 million barrels of Kirkuk crude. To date in phase XI, which ends on 29 May 2002, Iraqi oil exports have totalled 103.5 million barrels, for an estimated revenue of €1.8 billion or $1.6 billion.

An estimated $38.6 billion and €14.5 billion ($12.6 billion) in revenue has been generated from the export of some 2.9 billion barrels of oil since the start of the programme on 10 December 1996. With the adoption of Security Council resolution 1330 (2000) on 5 December 2000, 72 per cent of the oil proceeds fund the humanitarian programme in Iraq, 59 per cent of which is for the 15 central and southern governorates and 13 per cent for the three northern governorates.

Also during the same period, humanitarian supply contracts worth some $31.8 billion have been both approved by the Security Council’s 661 sanctions committee and “fast-tracked” by the Office of the Iraq Programme (OIP), including $2.9 billion worth of contracts for oil industry spare parts and equipment. To date, $19.2 billion worth of humanitarian supplies and equipment have been delivered to Iraq, including $1.1 billion worth of oil industry equipment, while another $10.8 billion worth of humanitarian supplies and $1.8 billion worth of oil industry equipment are in the production and delivery pipeline.

With 22 contracts, worth $40.7 million, released from hold by the 661 Committee during the week, and 52 new contracts, worth $79.3 million, placed on hold, the total value of “holds” stood at $5.27 billion, covering 2,075 contracts for the purchase of various humanitarian supplies and equipment. The “holds” comprised 1,435 contracts, worth $4.58 billion, for humanitarian supplies and 640 contracts, worth $683 million, for oil industry spare parts and equipment.

In the “inactive holds” category, there were 215 contracts, worth $307.4 million, for which the suppliers had not provided the additional technical information in over 60 days, as requested by the “holding” Committee member(s). At the same time, in the category of “active holds”, there were 582 contracts, worth more about $1.82 billion, for which although the suppliers had provided the requested information over 60 days ago, the “holding” Committee member(s) had not yet made a final decision.

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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