Iraqi minister calls for new oil company in Kurdistan Region

SULAIMANI (ESTA) — Iraq’s oil minister Ihsan Abdul Jabbar on Monday called for the establishment of a new oil company in the Kurdistan Region to manage the energy contracts signed by the Kurdish government.

Abdul Jabbar, speaking at the conclusion of a round of talks with Kurdish officials, also stressed the importance of reviewing Kurdistan’s current oil contracts, the oil ministry said in a statement, according to Reuters.

A high-level delegation from the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) visited Baghdad earlier on Monday for talks with senior Iraqi officials following a federal court’s ruling on the Region’s oil and gas law .

The KRG has been developing oil and gas resources independently of the federal government, and in 2007 enacted its own law that established the directives by which the region would administer them.

The Region’s massive untapped oil reserves, lucrative production-sharing contracts and safe environment have prompted international oil companies over recent years to commit to investing billions of dollars there.

But in February, Iraq’s federal court deemed the oil and gas law regulating the oil industry in Kurdistan unconstitutional and demanded that the KRG hand over their crude supplies.

Iraq’s federal court’s ruling gives the oil ministry in Baghdad the authority to manage oil and gas fields in the Region.

Member of the KRG delegation Khalid Shwani said in the press conference that the Region “wants to resolve the issue of oil with Baghdad on the basis of constitution”.

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