Will 2013 Decide the Fate of Iraqi Oil?

By Padraig O'Hannelly.

A year after the withdrawal of US troops, the terrorist attacks in Iraq continue, and the tensions between central government and the Kurdistan Regional Government continue to rise.

In the year ahead, we can expect to see further developments in the ongoing battle between Erbil and Baghdad over control of oil contracts and revenues, with a high likelihood that a deal will soon be announced between the KRG and Turkey to build a new pipeline that would be independent of the Ministry of Oil.

Tony Hayward, President and CEO of Genel Energy, has said many times that a "wall of oil" from Kurdistan will find its way to the market with or without an agreement between North and South, and that was not merely a display of bravado.

Some say a lot will depend on how Baghdad reacts, especially with regard to the oil companies tied to relatively unattractive service contracts in the South, while others no longer consider Baghdad to be relevant to the story.

How do you see this playing out? We'd welcome your opinions in the comment box below.

3 Responses to Will 2013 Decide the Fate of Iraqi Oil?

  1. Sam G 20th December 2012 at 13:34 #

    Talibani, having suffered a stroke, may never return to the position of President. Maliki, being the power seeker he is, will likely push for someone of his choice as a replacement for Talibani. Because of how significant the Kurds and their land are in the overall development of "Iraq" (with Kurdistan included), if Maliki forces them out of "the picture" so he can get more power, Maliki may end up permanently lying in a box, and because the three religious groups are being held together by force(s), the present country of Iraq will likely break into three parts, and what is now serving as their currency, will at some point become worth nothing, when each of the three groups decides to have their own money printed. Not long ago, there was an article that discussed the significance of the oil discovered in The Bakken field, which lies beneath the Dakotas, Montana, and a couple other states in the USA. And that, this oil field is so large, the USA may not need oil from the Mid-East. How would that affect Iraq?

  2. Lorenzo 20th December 2012 at 20:36 #

    To Sam,

    Amen and a more prosperous new year!

  3. Amedo 29th December 2012 at 11:56 #

    It's all about money and power! nobody cares about the suffering of Iraqi people after long years of wars , sanctions and chaos! many people from the west have been campaigning in the global media about Kurdistan " the amazing land of promising opportunities = A LOT of easy money" forgetting that everybody in Iraq including the Kurdish people realize very well that all billions of the "Transparent" under table oil contracts are going to pocket of few powerful persons who control everything there and also pay very well to some cheap writers and VIP retired advisors to spread this false image everywhere in the world! so the Iraq cake is SO BIG but if you think that by the end of 2013 the story will be ended, I'm sorry to tell you that the REAL game in Iraq has just started!!!