14 May 2007 - 13:39
  • News Code: 104628

Between five million and 15 million dollars worth of oil a day is unaccounted for in Iraq and could have been siphoned off through corruption or smuggling, The New York Times reported Saturday.

Citing a draft U.S. government report it gained access to, the newspaper said the amounts relate to between 100,000 and 300,000 barrels a day of Iraq"s declared oil production over the past four years.


  The report does not give a final conclusion on what happened to the missing fraction of the roughly two million barrels pumped by Iraq each day, the paper said.


  But the findings are sure to reinforce longstanding suspicions that smugglers, insurgents and corrupt officials control significant parts of the country"s oil industry, The Times said.


Just the facts


The report also covered alternative explanations for the billions of dollars worth of discrepancies, including the possibility that Iraq has been consistently overstating its oil production.


 Iraq and the U.S. State Department have been under relentless pressure to show tangible progress in Iraq by raising production levels, which have languished well below the U.S. goal of three million barrels a day, according to the report.




News Code 104628

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