Texas Court grants KRG’s motion to vacate order
The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) on Tuesday, August 26, 2014 welcomed a decision by a United States District Court in Houston, Texas, which threw out an order that prohibited more than 1 million barrels of oil produced in the Kurdistan Region from reaching the United States.
According to the decision by the court on Monday, Iraq’s complaint failed to establish any legal authority to prohibit the import of KRG oil into the United States.
This is now the second time that the Iraqi Federal Oil ministry (MoO) has seen its efforts rejected by the courts. The first time, in June of this year, the Federal Supreme Court in Baghdad rejected MoO’s effort to suspend Kurdistan’s oil sales as being “contrary to the applicable legal contexts in Iraq.”
The KRG Minister of Natural Resources, Ashti Hawrami, stated: “We are pleased with yesterday’s events. The ruling of the Texas court should give confidence to buyers of Kurdistan crude oil in the US and elsewhere.”
Minister Hawrami continued: “We hope that yesterday’s ruling marks the end of MoO’s efforts to interfere with the economic rights of the Kurdistan Region. The KRG legally produces, exports, and sells oil in accordance with the rights of the Kurdistan Region as set forth in the Iraqi constitu- tion and embodied in international law. We now hope that the New Federal Government, once it is formed in Baghdad, comes to terms with the KRG’s oil and gas rights and prohibits MoO from any further costly, damaging and unlawful efforts to hinder Kurdistan from selling its oil.”
Bloomberg Businessweek wrote that Iraq had failed to convince the district judge that “the oil was misappropriated when it was loaded into a tanker in the Mediterranean Sea after being pumped across Turkey in an Iraq-owned pipeline.”
The building of the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas.