Iraqi oil for sale


At a Fabian Society event during the Labour Party conference a month ago, I asked David Miliband a question: Was the British government looking to finance its operations in Iraq through the sale of Iraqi oil? Miliband dismissed the question without answering, partly because any specific answer could backfire on him spectacularly.

But still, I do wonder why the Iraqi government is being forced to put up 40 billion dollars worth of oil up for sale so suddenly?

The biggest ever sale of oil assets will take place today, when the Iraqi government puts 40bn barrels of recoverable reserves up for offer in London.

Access is being given to eight fields, representing about 40% of the Middle Eastern nation’s reserves, at a time when the country remains under occupation by US and British forces.

Issam al-Chalabi, Iraq’s oil minister between 1987 and 1990, questioned why there had been no competitive tendering for the gas-gathering contract and claimed it had gone to Shell as the spoils of war.

“Why choose Shell when you could have chosen ExxonMobil, Chevron, BG or Gazprom?” he asked. “Shell appears to be paying $4bn to get hold of assets that in 20 years could be worth $40bn. Iraq is giving away half its gas wealth and yet this work could have been done by Iraq itself.”

All smells very suspicious to me. Given there is so much corruption right now in the area, thanks to US and British involvement, this action is worth even less. It would be better an open tendering process is conducted by an outside organisation that is then able to account for the money properly after.

  1. #1 by zeva on 14th October, 2008 - 10:17 am

    Even if US and UK had a desire to capture oil reserves, what is wrong in it ? In every generation people fought for Women, water and Land and destroyed civilisations irrespective of region and religion to which they belong. Are others in several parts of world are not doing same acts of aggresion ??

  2. #2 by platinum786 on 14th October, 2008 - 11:25 am

    ^^^ what’s wrong is the lies behind the war. If you wanted to fight a war to claim Muslim resources, then just say so.

  3. #3 by Random Guy on 15th October, 2008 - 1:19 pm

    What a non-surprise. Conquest completed, looting and plundering can commence. Well done to all the supporters of this war - you have my eternal repugnance.

    And at comment #1: What is wrong in it? I wish you were close enough to me so I could make a proper reply to your question, but since you aren’t, suffice to say that everything is wrong “in it”.

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