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Iraq Oil Output Stable Amid Mass Protests

Iraq Oil Output Stable Amid Mass ProtestsIraq Oil Output Stable Amid Mass Protests

Iraq is pumping oil at normal levels even as protests spread across the southern region from where OPEC’s second-biggest producer exports most of its crude, a government spokesman said. “Production and exports from southern Iraq are stable as per normal levels,” Oil Ministry Spokesman Asim Jihad also said by phone, Bloomberg reported. Authorities have deployed security forces to protect energy fields and facilities in the region, he added. Protests broke out last week in the southern province of Basra by residents asking for jobs at some of the country’s giant oilfields operated by international companies such as ExxonMobil Corp. and Lukoil PJSC. Iraqis have protested about unemployment and inadequate public services, including power and water shortages ever since the US-led invasion of 2003. Iraq has been rebuilding its energy industry and ranks second only to Saudi Arabia for production within the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries. The country is pumping 4.55 million barrels per day and its exports have reached 3.52 million bpd in June, the International Energy Agency said.

 

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