15 Nov 2007
Oil firms which have signed contracts with the Kurdistan regional government (KRG) will be barred from deals with Baghdad. "We are considering that and we are writing to some of the companies about the consequences of their actions," Hussain al Shahristani said on Wednesday when asked if Baghdad would exclude those firms. Shahristani, who is in Riyadh to attend an OPEC heads of state summit on Nov. 17-18, declined to name the companies, saying, "You will hear."
The comments come as the autonomous Kurdistan in northern Iraq has stepped up efforts to lure foreign oil forms to sign new oil production contracts. Kurdish officials have clashed with Baghdad over Kurdistan's oil deals and the content of the national oil law. Iraq's oil law will determine how oil contracts are awarded and how revenues are distributed from the world's third-largest proven oil reserves.