Iraq’s Oil Production Fuels Regional Tensions

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In a two-round bidding procedure that concluded in mid-December, the international oil industry regained access to Iraq’s upstream resources for the first time since the 1975 nationalization, with service contracts awarded for the development of 13 major fields. Although some critics denounced the deals as a sell-off of Iraq’s resources to foreigners, Iraqi Oil Minister Husain al-Shahristani negotiated very good terms for them. Production will rise from the current 2.5 million barrels per day (mbpd) to 12 mbpd, and Iraq will be in control of every drop of oil extracted on payment of fees amounting to only $1 to $1.50 […]

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