U.S. sees oil as key to post-Saddam Iraq

Wednesday, January 29, 2003

The United States views oil as a top priority in Iraq after the toppling of the regime of President Saddam Hussein.

"Oil will remain the primary source of revenue and will play a pivotal role in the country's economic reconstruction," a statement by a special panel formed by the State Department said. Organized by the department's Future of Iraq Project, the group met late last month, Middle East Newsline reported.

Its goal is to establish "a rehabilitated, globally connected oil and gas sector," the statement said.

The group, which plans to reconvene over the next few weeks, stressed the need to establish a favorable investment climate and attract international and local capital for the reconstruction and growth of the industry. The statement said a priority of the working group is to draft plans on how to restore Iraq's energy capacity in wake of the expected U.S.-led war against the Saddam regime.

In a two-day meeting, Iraqi-born oil and gas experts discussed the administration of Iraq's huge oil and natural gas sector. The discussions on Dec. 20-21 also discussed Saddam's contracts with Russian companies to explore for and develop energy resources.

The group aimed to identify short- and medium-term priorities for the Iraqi oil and gas sector in the post-Saddam era. Another objective by the group was to determine the components required for a restructuring of the energy industry.

Print this Article Print this Article Email this article Email this article Subscribe to this Feature Free Headline Alerts
Search Worldwide Web Search Search WorldTrib Archives

See current edition of

Return to World Front Cover

Back to School Sweepstakes