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Deals With Iraq Are Set to Bring Oil Giants Back
Key Excerpts from Article on Website of New York Times


New York Times, June 19, 2008
Posted: July 3rd, 2008
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/19/world/middleeast/19iraq.ht...

Four Western oil companies are in the final stages of negotiations this month on contracts that will return them to Iraq, 36 years after losing their oil concessions to nationalization as Saddam Hussein rose to power. Exxon Mobil, Shell, Total and BP the original partners in the Iraq Petroleum Company along with Chevron and a number of smaller oil companies, are in talks with Iraqs Oil Ministry for no-bid contracts to service Iraqs largest fields. The deals, expected to be announced on June 30, will lay the foundation for the first commercial work for the major companies in Iraq since the American invasion, and open a new and potentially lucrative country for their operations. The no-bid contracts are unusual for the industry, and the offers prevailed over others by more than 40 companies, including companies in Russia, China and India. The contracts [would] give the companies an advantage in bidding on future contracts. There was suspicion among many in the Arab world and among parts of the American public that the United States had gone to war in Iraq precisely to secure the oil wealth these contracts seek to extract. The Bush administration has said that the war was necessary to combat terrorism. Sensitive to the appearance that they were profiting from the war and already under pressure because of record high oil prices, senior officials of two of the companies, speaking only on the condition that they not be identified, said they were helping Iraq rebuild its decrepit oil industry.

Note: For many revealing reports from reliable sources on the real reasons behind the war in Iraq, click here.


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