Kurdistan Region president meets Kadhimi in Baghdad

Kurdistan Region President Nechirvan Barzani meets Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi in Baghdad, April 10, 2021. (PM office)

SULAIMANI (ESTA) — Kurdistan Region President met with Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi in Baghdad on Saturday and the premier stressed the need to strengthen security coordination between Erbil and Baghdad.

Barzani arrived in the Iraqi capital on Saturday afternoon to meet with Kadhimi, President Barham Salih, Parliament Speaker Mohammed al-Halbousi, and U.N. envoy to Iraq Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert as well as the head of Supreme Judicial Council and the president of the Arab League who is in Baghdad now.

Barzani and Kadhimi discussed cooperation between government institutions in the federal government and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) in accordance with Iraqi constitution, the premier’s office said in a statement.

They also discussed efforts to combat terrorism and cooperation between Baghdad and Erbil in Sinjar, the statement read.

Kadhimi stressed during the meeting the need to strengthen “complete security coordination between Baghdad and Erbil in a manner that achieves internal stability and prevents any gap that could exploited by terrorism or organized crime in the disputed areas or elsewhere,” according to the statement.

He also affirmed that Barzani’s repeated visits to Baghdad “sends correct messages to all Iraqis, contributes to building confidence, indicates goodwill and stimulates a spirit of joint cooperation and coordination in all fields for the benefit of the country,” the prime minister’s office said.

They also discussed the federal budget law for 2021. Kadhimi hoped the law would be applied “accurately and would not engage in interpretations that contradict the provision of service to Iraqi citizens,” the statement said.

The Iraqi Council of Representatives approved the federal budget of 130 trillion Iraqi dinars ($89.65 billion) as the country wrestles with an economic and financial crisis due to low crude prices.

After months of wrangling, the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) and the central government reached an agreement on thorny issues, including oil and non-oil revenues.

Under the 2021 budget law, the Kurdistan Region will be committed to produce 460,000 barrels of oil per day (bpd).

After deducting expenses for production operations in the Region, transport of oil and the domestic consumption of crude oil, the KRG must hand over to Baghdad revenues generated from regional oil exports of 250,000 bpd, according to Iraq’s SOMO pricing, as well as 50 percent of non-oil revenue.

The Kurdistan Region, in return, will receive its share of the budget, which is set at 13.9%.

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