London: Iraq and Iran have begun exchanging crude oil, the Iranian oil ministry's news agency SHANA said on Sunday.
Crude from the Kirkuk field in northern Iraq is being shipped by truck to Iran. Tehran will use the oil in its refineries and will deliver the same amount of oil to Iraq's southern ports, on the Gulf.
Baghdad agreed for the first time to divert crude from Kirkuk province, which it retook from the Kurds, to Iran, where it will supply a refinery in the city of Kermanshah.
Between 30,000 and 60,000 barrels per day (bpd) of Kirkuk crude will be delivered by the tanker trucks to Darreh Shahr in southwestern Iran, SHANA said.
Iraq and Iran plan to build a pipeline to carry the oil from Kirkuk to avoid having to use trucks.
The swap deal allows Iraq to resume sales of Kirkuk crude, which have been halted since Iraqi forces took back control of the fields from the Kurds in October 2017.