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Iraqi crude exports under UN 'oil-for-food' scheme jumped in late May

Iraqi crude exports under UN 'oil-for-food' scheme jumped in late May

Iraqi petroleum exports under the United Nations oil-for-food programme surged during the last week in May, according to the office running the scheme, which allows Baghdad to use a portion of its revenues to purchase humanitarian relief.

From the previous week's low of 9 million barrels, Iraqi exports jumped to 15.3 million in the week ending 31 May, the Office of the Iraq Programme reported today. Baghdad earned an estimated €355 million (euros) or $333 million in revenue from the sales.

During phase XI of the programme, which ended on 29 May, 225.9 million barrels of oil were sold for some €4.89 billion or $4.59 billion in revenue. Sixteen per cent of Iraqi oil exports went to Europe, 58.7 per cent to the Americas/Caribbean market, 23.7 per cent to the Far East and 1.6 per cent to South Africa.

Despite the resumed oil exports and revenues, the programme is reporting continued funding difficulties. Owing to a budget shortfall, currently 744 humanitarian supply contracts - worth over $1.86 billion - which have been approved by the UN cannot be further processed for lack of funds.