Wednesday, May 2, 2007

An Oilshed Event in Iraq

Can't very well call this one a watershed event. Make a big check on the Democratic proposed benchmarks for a Maliki scorecard. The oil law has been voted out of the cabinet and will become law at the end of May:

The Iraqi Prime Minister said that the Iraqi Cabinet accepted a draft law which states how Iraq's oil profits will be shared, it will also outline terms of how foreign oil agencies will be able to operate in the country, Iraq Development Program reported.

Under the terms of the new draft law, the Iraqi National Oil Company (INOC) will be independently functional and joined with oil companies around the country.

Iraq's Deputy Prime Minister stated that the oil sector's profits will be put in a central account and distributed according to population and that the draft law will be put into action by the end of this month.
Read the article here. This is very big news - though it does not seem to have hit the MSM yet. Only a few days ago, the Washington Post was criticizing the Maliki government, stating that negotiations over the proposed hydrocarbon law were hopelessly deadlocked. What a difference a week makes. My hat is off to PM Maliki, and my respect for him grows each week. This is a huge political step forward for Iraq - and it will be an equally hard blow to Harry Reid and company.

Update: The Kurds don't like this law as it will greatly centralize the government, but with less then 60 seats in a 275 member parliament, they are not going to be able to win on the vote.

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