The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) is prepared to hand over oil, airports, border points and all revenues to Baghdad if Iraq’s federal government provides the region with its 17% share of the budget, according to the KRG Primes Minister, Nechirvan Barzani.
In a press statement on Sunday, the KRG’s council requested Iraqi ministers not to enforce the 2018 federal budget that had not had the participation of the regional ministers.
The KRG said: “Reducing the budget share of the Kurdistan Region, which occurs for the first time since 2005, from 17 percent to 12.6 percent,” would be unconstitutional considering the population of the region. According to the regional government, Iraq and Kurdistan have agreed the percentage of the total population living in the Kurdish area is 17%.
Tensions have been high since the independence referendum towards the end of September, that was not recognised by Iraq or any other international power. As a result, the Iraq military took control of the oil rich Kirkuk, which had a significant impact on oil production and therefore the economy.
Barzani said: “We’re ready to handover oil, airports, border gates, and all revenues to Baghdad if the [Federal Government of Iraq] sends the salaries [of KRG employees], the Kurdistan Region’s 17 percent constitutional budget share, and other financial dues.”