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Zig’s Place Chat and News Early Tuesday AM 5-4-21

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butterfly  2021-05-04 01:44  Shafaq News / OPEC’s share of India’s oil imports fell to the lowest in at least two decades in the year to the end of March as overall purchases by Asia’s third largest economy fell to a six-year low, data obtained from industry and trade sources showed, Reuters reported.  Total crude imports by the world’s third-biggest oil importer fell to 3.97 million barrels per day (bpd) in the 2021 fiscal year to March 31, down 11.8% from a year earlier, the data showed.

India bought more U.S. and Canadian oil at the expense of that from Africa and the Middle East, reducing purchases from members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries to around 2.86 million barrels per day and squeezing the group’s share of imports to 72% from around 80% previously.

That is the lowest share since at least the 2001/02 fiscal year, before which crude import data is not available.

India’s refiners are diversifying purchases to boost margins, having upgraded plants to process cheaper tougher crude grades, but refinery runs were hit as the pandemic curbed fuel consumption.

The country’s annual fuel demand in 2020/21 fell for the for the first time in at least 23 years, according to government data released last month, hitting its lowest since 2016/2017.

The share of Middle East producers rose to about 62% in the 2020/21 year from 60% in the previous year as refiners took committed volumes under annual oil contracts, the data showed.

U.S. and Canadian oil accounted for about 7% and 1.3% respectively of India’s imports compared to 4.5% and 0.60% a year earlier.

butterfly  The United States emerged as the fifth biggest supplier to India, up two places from the 2019/20 year.

Iraq remained India’s top oil supplier followed by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Nigeria replaced Venezuela as the fourth biggest supplier.

In March, India imported 4.39 million bpd, 12% more than in February as refineries ramped up output, the data showed. However that was still a drop of around 0.5% from March 2020.

Iraq was the top supplier for the month, followed by Saudi Arabia, which pushed the U.S into fourth place behind the United Arab Emirates.

butterfly  2021-05-04 06:55 Shafaq News/ The Rapporteur of the Parliamentary Committee for Agriculture and Water warned of the deterioration of the Tigris and Euphrates river stages in the upcoming period.

Committee Rapporteur, Salam al-Shammari, said in a press statement today, Tuesday, “Turkey tries to use the water card, especially the Euphrates, to pass its plans.”

“An official of North and East Syria announced that the Euphrates level dropped by more than five meters for the first time in history. This is a serious matter. It is an omen to Iraq.”

Al-Shammari called on the government to conclude an agreement with Turkey to secure its share of Euphrates and Tigris and prevent Turkey from water manipulation for political purposes.

One hundred twenty-five civil organizations in the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria condemned earlier today limiting the water flow of the Euphrates river, demanding it to adhere to the water-sharing rules with Syria.

In 1987, Ankara and Damascus concluded an agreement over the water shares of each country from the Euphrates. According to the agreement, Syria has 5000 meter cube per second, equivalent to 250 barrels.

Since 2020’s summer, Turkey has reduced Syria’s share to 200 meter cube per second, which ravaged the Agriculture and electricity sector in northern and eastern Syria.

butterfly  2021-05-04 07:04  Shafaq News/ The Prime Minister of Iraq, Mustafa al-Kadhimi, appointed a former governor of Erbil as his aide for reconstruction and Investment affairs.

A source told Shafaq News Agency that Erbil’s former governor, Nawzad Hadi, will handle the duties of the Prime Minister’s Advisor for Reconciliation and Investments.

Hadi confirmed the reports to Shafaq News Agency, adding that his appointment decree will be issued later today, Tuesday.

Hadi held the position of Erbil’s governor for 15 years, during which the city witnessed a reconstruction and industrial revolution.

butterfly  2021-05-04 Shafaq News/ UK stealth fighter jets are to be dispatched from the £3 billion ($4.16bn) warship HMS Queen Elizabeth to “pack a potent punch” against the remnants of ISIS in Syria and Iraq, “Express and Star” said.

The Ministry of Defence said the F-35B Lightning jets would support operations in the countries from the Carrier Strike Group, a flotilla of British warships on a six-month global mission.

Leading the fleet is aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth, which left its base in Portsmouth in southern England on Sunday. The ship is accompanied by a US destroyer and Dutch frigate to provide extra protection.

Eight Royal Air Force and 10 US Marine Corps F-35B stealth fighter jets will operate on board the vessel.

Air Chief Marshal Sir Mike Wigston said the jets would help to weed out terrorists in Iraq and Syria.

He said he had no doubt violent extremism was still rooted in the region despite the weakening of the ISIS foothold.

The F-35Bs are equipped with advanced sensors, mission systems and stealth technology allowing them to carry out surveillance and reconnaissance tasks in remote areas.

He told PA that ISIS was “no longer the ground-holding force, the occupying force that it was in 2015 and 2016”.

“For the last two years, we have been identifying pockets where they have dug into strongholds in the mountains in remote areas, and have been helping the government of Iraq to clear out those remnants.”

Mr Wigston said Iraqi security forces were becoming “stronger day by day” and a time would come when UK and US support in the region was no longer needed.

butterfly  “I wouldn’t like to put a date on it, but I have great faith in the progress the Iraqi forces are making,” he said.

Britain’s Armed Forces Minister James Heappey said deployment of the stealth fighter jets from the aircraft carrier was central to the government’s foreign affairs goals.

“The F-35B Lightning jets will pack a potent punch against Daesh and help prevent them from regaining a foothold in Iraq,” he said.

“This is a prime example of the UK armed forces stepping forward with our allies to confront persistent threats around the world. It is global Britain in action.”

Billed as the largest concentration of UK maritime and air power in a generation, the aircraft carrier will be accompanied by six Royal Navy ships, a submarine armed with Tomahawk cruise missiles, 14 naval helicopters and a company of Royal Marines.

India, Japan, South Korea and Singapore are among the 40 destinations on the tour, demonstrating Britain’s strategic tilt to the Indo-Pacific region to counter the increasing military strength of China.

Air and maritime forces from the UAE will operate alongside the group for part of the trip, the Ministry of Defence said.

butterfly  2021-05-04 05:29  Shafaq News/ A leader of al-Fatah Alliance said that the Federal Supreme Court will be decisive in the issue of the provincial councils’ issue.

Ghadhanfar al-Batikh, a leader of the Alliance led by Hadi al-Amiri, said, “The Federal Court issued an order on the provincial councils in the lawsuit, filed by Basem Khashan in 2018, on the authority of the Parliamentary to legislate an article that allows the provincial councils to resume its work.”

“an appeal was lodged to annul the law 27 that dissolved the provincial councils. The Federal Court set 25 of the current month to settle this issue. The anticipated ruling of the court will be decisive.”

On Sunday, the Federal Supreme Court ruled against the constitutionality of Article 14/first of the first amendment of the law for governorates not affiliated with regions.

The aforementioned article is related to the work of councils of governorates (provinces) and districts.

butterfly   Nothing has changed same old same old. see ya all later.

Sheila  Don’t know if this has been posted yet: Iraq to Participate in Buna Payment Platform — https://www.iraq-businessnews.com/2021/01/05/iraq-to-participate-in-buna-payment-platform/

Sheila   — The Central Bank of Iraq (CBI) has reportedly announced its participation in the Arab Monetary Fund’s Buna payment platform.

The AMF describes Buna as a multi-currency payment platform, providing clearing and settlement services, in Arab and international currencies.

Sheila   Posted January 5, 2021: Sources Shafaq News: Iraq to Participate in Buna Payment Platform — https://www.iraq-businessnews.com/2021/01/05/iraq-to-participate-in-buna-payment-platform/

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