New twists in a deal with the oil company Exxon Mobil
21-12-2011 | (Voice of Iraq)

In T. 22 011 officials announced that a response from energy giant Exxon Mobil that it had signed a contract to explore oil and gas in the province of Kurdistan. The central government in Baghdad considers these contracts are illegal, so you need against them. Recently added two new Malomtan to this ongoing dispute. First, that three of the six fields that will work where Exxon is located in the disputed area outside the territory of Kurdistan, and Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki that the current contract for the company in southern Iraq will not be canceled because of its deal with the Kurds. Exxon has developed itself in a complicated situation when it agreed to work with the Kurds and is now trying to get out of this impasse.

Was detected Exxon contract with the Kurds in the v 2 2011. Basically agreed on 18 v 1 but not announced until the beginning of T 2 when stated by the Minister of Natural Resources in the Kurdistan Regional Government Ashti Hawrami.
Objected to the Baghdad government, saying that contracts directly with the Kurds is not legal because they have not been through the Ministry of Oil. And Deputy Prime Minister for Energy, Hussain al-Shahristani that Exxon must choose between working in the north or the south of Iraq. In 2009 won the Exxon Bmzaidh develop West Qurna 1 in Basra, in partnership with Royal Dutch Shell. Finally, he claimed, Oil Minister Abdul Karim defect that the Kurds have to decide either to be part of Iraq or to be an independent country, which means that they have no right to sign contracts for oil. Energy policy is contradictory to both governments in the heart of the problem as each party believes it can sign contracts without reference to the other party. They also offer different conditions and the texts on the oil companies. Where the Ministry of Oil has offered technical services contracts require companies to reach a certain level of production before they receive their financial dues which determines earnings and profits over the government. For their part, the Kurds have signed production sharing agreements require companies to put a lot of their money in advance for the development, but have offered more profits, and companies can claim a reserve of oil in fields in which they operate. Baghdad had the upper hand in this conflict because it controls the majority of oil reserves in the country and on the oil infrastructure in control of the exports, Exxon dropped because of threats the central government. It announced that it had suspended its contract with the Kurds, as well as Prime Minister Maliki told the press that he would not cancel contract Exxon in West Qurna 1. And then, during his visit to Washington as the mid-1, met with officials and Exxon announced that they reconsider their negotiations with the Kurds. Appeared from the beginning that Baghdad will gain this controversy. Although the contract binding, the West Qurna field, 1 is one of the five largest oil fields in the country with reserves estimated at 8.7 billion barrels. And currently produces 370,000 barrels per day. By comparison, the Exxon all you can do in Kurdistan is to explore oil and gas because it obtain the approval of Baghdad to sell what it produces. If Exxon continued its plans with the Kurds, it will cause more conflict. Three of the six sites which are scheduled to work the company is located in the disputed areas in Nineveh and Tamim outside the boundaries of any province of Kurdistan, although the Kurds manage since the U.S. invasion in 2003, where the Kurds claim that these areas back historically to the Kurds and they want annexed to them . Arabs for their part, oppose it, and that trying to bring a large foreign company to that place aggravate feelings. The Kurds already signed seven other contracts in the disputed area, but companies with medium and small size, in different parts of the provinces of Diyala and nationalization. As long as these areas are located, de facto, under the control of the Kurdistan Regional Government, she did not object to the exploration rights granted to foreign companies, and this is another sign of division between the two governments, not only about the country's natural resources but also on the disputed areas.
Although not announced anything official yet, it appears that Exxon would cancel its deal with the Kurds, the work in the south of Iraq, it seems very tempting, as most of Iraq's oil reserves is located in the south, and the company operates in one of the largest fields there. We have invested millions of dollars, and plans for a large infrastructure project in Basra, in addition to the extraction of oil, and this is much gambling and can not be sacrificed for oil exploration in Kurdistan.
Exxon is still making the reason for this step is unclear, but it is certain that the Baghdad government pressure on the company's idea. All this shows the continuing differences between the two governments on the management of the country's resources and solve the problem of the disputed areas. Only way to solve the first problem is to pass a new oil law, which is long overdue. In fact, hold that Exxon could have hampered efforts to discuss the new energy law in the Iraqi parliament.
Also decide the future of the disputed areas have proved the failure of follow-up. Constitution of 2005 has put a series of steps of the decision on each disputed area, but these steps have not been implemented. Most of the Arab political parties does not wish to expand the Kurdistan region, while the Kurds will not stop for the management of these areas until the final decision on them. These cases were subjected to hinder the formation of the first government since 2005, does not seem they Stjaddan solutions in the near future. If Exxon has chosen to continue its contract with the Kurds to the increased complexity of the position on both issues.
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