The prime minister of the Kurdistan Regional Government of Iraq, Masrour Barzani, announced on Friday that his government had submitted two proposals to the federal government regarding the salaries of the region’s employees.
Speaking during a press conference at the end of his talks in Baghdad on Thursday with Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammad Shia al-Sudani, Barzani said: “The delegation of the Kurdistan Regional Government came to Baghdad to defend the constitutional rights of the people of Kurdistan. We are reaching along with the federal government several solutions for current problems.”
While the statements issued by the Iraqi officials, with whom the Kurdish delegation held negotiations, confirmed that serious solutions would be reached to address the outstanding issues, attention is turning to the decisions that would be taken by the Federal Council of Ministers on Sunday, to support the negotiations that took place between the two sides.
The main differences revolve around oil, the budget, and employees’ salaries.
An agreement on the oil share seems difficult as a result of the divergent vision of the two parties regarding how to legislate the oil and gas law, which has been postponed since 2007.
Moreover, the region’s share of the general budget of the Iraqi state has been disputed since the adoption of the permanent Iraqi constitution in 2005, due to the lack of a population census.
As for the salary crisis, it emerged in 2014 when the then federal government refrained from handing over the salaries of the region’s employees unless the regional government paid the oil revenues sourced from within the regional territory.
Meanwhile, Turkish Energy Minister Alparslan Bayraktar announced on Friday that inspection of the oil pipeline from the Kurdistan region to the port of Ceyhan had been completed.
Türkiye has begun maintenance work on the pipeline that passes through a seismically active area, which Ankara says was damaged by floods resulting from the devastating earthquake that struck the southern region on February 6.
The Iraqi Kurdistan government has lost about $4 billion since oil flows to the Turkish port of Ceyhan via the pipeline stopped.