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crude-oilBAGHDAD: Iraq's Oil Minister Abdul-Kareem Luaibi said on Saturday he expected oil exports will reach 2.9 million barrels per day next year before hitting 3.5 million bpd in 2014 and 3.75 million bpd in 2015.

Luaibi told an oil conference in Baghdad that exports will reach 6 million bpd by 2017.

Current production in the OPEC country is at 3.2 million bpd, and exports so far are at an average of 2.6 million bpd.

"We expect exports for this month to be more than 2.6 million barrels per day. So far they are at 2.6 million barrels per day, and output is at 3.2 million," the minister told reporters.

Recovering from years of war and sanctions, Iraq is expected to become one of the world's largest sources of new oil in the market as it rebuilds its industry after signing major contracts for its southern oilfields with foreign companies.

Copyright Reuters, 2012