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Soviet Union

Trade with the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), particularly Iraq and Algeria, absorbed the largest share of the Soviet Union's ""unidentified"" exports (see table 52, Appendix A). Although Soviet statistics usually showed a very low or negative trade balance with these countries, the balance was probably high because of arms sales. In the 1980s, some OPEC countries, particularly Iran and Iraq, together with Syria, which was not a member of OPEC, exchanged oil for Soviet arms and military equipment. Oil from these countries was resold to the West for hard currency. In the late 1980s, the Soviet Union attempted to increase its exports of nonmilitary goods to these countries. In May 1986, the Soviet Union and Iraq agreed to increase Soviet nonmilitary equipment sales, and in August 1986 an attempt was made to revive Iraqi gas sales.

Data as of May 1989