Major US companies to stop tendering for Iraqi Kurdistan’s oil

Major US companies to stop tendering for Iraqi Kurdistan’s oil
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Three major US energy firms will stop tendering for projects in Kurdistan Region, Iraqi oil ministry said

In a pledge to comply with the Iraqi top court’s decision that outlaws the Region’s oil and gas legislation, U.S. oilfield services companies Schlumberger, Baker Hughes and Halliburton have confirmed that they will no longer be applying to new projects in the Kurdistan Region.

The Iraqi Federal Supreme Court in February ruled the Kurdistan Region’s oil and gas law to be “unconstitutional,” denouncing the legal basis for regional government’s management of oil and gas in its territory. 

“The companies are in the process of liquidating and closing the existing tenders and contracts, confirming through this pledge that they do not own a commercial entity or other companies operating in the Region.” the ministry’s statement read.

The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) responded to the decision, saying that the court’s ruling is not only “unconstitutional” but also “unjust,” Rudaw reported.

"Baker Hughes has been committed to supporting Iraq’s energy needs for decades and we are keen to continue doing so in accordance with local laws and regulations," Reuters cited a Baker Hughes spokesperson as saying.

Rudaw reported it has seen a letter signed by Schlumberger stating that the company will comply with the court’s decision.

There have been years of attempts by the federal government to bring KRG revenues under its control, and the Iraqi oil ministry after the February court ruling stepped up efforts, summoning seven other firms operating there to a commercial court on May 19. The firms were Addax, DNO, Genel, Gulf Keystone, HKN, Shamaran and WesternZagros, Reuters reported.