Iraqi Economists Network

شبكة الاقتصاديين العراقيين

Electricity an Renewable Energy

The Oxford Institute of Energy Studies* Compounding crises: Iraq’s oil and energy economy by Ahmed Mehdi, Research Associate, OIES and Ali Al-Saffar, IEA

Having already started the year in a fragile position, Iraq entered 2020’s oil price crisis under visibly different  circumstances to the previous crash of 2014-15; In 2015, Iraq was the world’s second-largest contributor to global liquids growth accounting for approximately 75% of OPEC production growth. The launch of a new crude grade – Basra Heavy  and the build-out of new export infrastructure (and midstream upgrades) allowed the country to increase crude exports and market share. Unlike the previous crisis, any serviceable predictor on the current shape of the recovery is notably absent. Uncertainty surrounding the shape of the economic recovery stands in sharp  contrast to the period 2014-16, which saw average oil demand grow by just over 1.7m b/d. Furthermore, like other Gulf states in the region, Iraq’s lockdown measures have severely impacted non-oil economic performance, and laid bare some key barriers to private sector growth.

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