14 Dec 2009

Shell shock

Even for those who have entertained the thought that the Iraq wars might possibly have something to do with access to oil, it is with some shock, and even a little awe, that we hear the news that the country has auctioned off the rights to the vast Majnoon oilfield to that global do-gooder Shell.

With 90% of Iraqi oil reserves effectively up for grabs, I think we can consider that country well and truly liberated.

Apparently without any irony, the BBC reports: "It needs the expertise of foreign companies to reach that goal of reviving its oil industry, which has been battered by years of war and sanctions."

And, amazingly: "As much of its oil is relatively cheap to extract, analysts suggest the potential profits for foreign companies could be huge."

An energy expert then tells us: "This is an opportunity without precedent anywhere else in the world... That is something that no oil company... can ignore."

By the way, in Arabic "majnoon" means "insane".

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