Iraq on Thursday threatened not to consider Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) for oil contracts after the company struck a deal with the Kurdish Regional Government. RIL, however, denied committing any breach of law.
“Our position is very clear. Any company that signs oil contracts (with regional governments) without federal government approval will compromise their chances of getting future oil contracts in Iraq,” Oil Minister Hussain Al-Shahristani told reporters in Riyadh.
Hussain, who is here to attend the OPEC meeting, said Baghdad had conveyed this to RIL.
Any company that signs oil contracts (with regional governments) without approval will compromise their chances of getting future oil contracts in Iraq, says Oil Minister Hussain al-Shahristani.
RIL had signed the contract for two blocks paying $15.5-17.5 million.
RIL, which last week signed the contract for the blocks Rovi and Sarta in northern Iraq with the autonomous Kurdish Regional Government, said the agreements “are within the legal framework.”
“Reliance has always maintained highest cordial relationship with the Government of Iraq and all other stakeholders in the countries where we operate. We will continue to do so in future,” RIL said.
The blocks, measuring 517 and 607 sq km respectively, have almost 80 per cent oil-bearing structure and RIL has paid a signing amount of $15.5-17.5 million for the two.
“Iraq will not allow its oil to be exported without federal government approval. We have informed and warned them of the consequences. They will not be able to take oil out of the country,” the minister said.