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Iraq: In for the long haul

The recapture of Kirkuk was swift, but the Baghdad-Erbil crisis is far from over

The core of the dispute between Baghdad and the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) is sovereignty over disputed territory. But the fate of oil is inextricably bound up in the same dispute. At issue is the ownership of oilfields and export routes. On the one side there's the state-owned North Oil Company (NOC), with its Kirkuk fields now back in government hands; and on the other, companies operating under the KRG umbrella. In a matter of days, the Iraqi oil scene has undergone a huge change. For many months, prior to the latest crisis, close to 0.6m barrels a day of crude oil was flowing from northern fields to the Turkish port of Ceyhan for export, with the KRG pocketing the revenue in resp



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