The purpose of the book is to present, as near as possible, a complete and comprehensive detailed history of Iraqs oil and gas industry during the twentieth century which has been dealt with in a fragmented and inaccurate manner at times in various books, papers and articles.
Though the oil revenues have been the life blood of Iraq during the past seventy five years, those who have successfully participated in developing, managing and operating it have been overshadowed and marginalised by the somewhat turbulent and violent historical and political events at the hands of the mainly amateur politicians including the numerous coups, revolutions, and finally the tragic and destructive wars and sanctions which brought the country to its knees. Hence it is thought that it is about time that the successful industry and its professionalsand technocrats be given their long overdue recognition and appreciation.
Iraqs vast proven recoverable reserves of some 142 billion barrels of oil and the trillions of cubic feet of gas, together with its long neglected oil and gas industry and its numerous related topics, have been widely reported in the national and international media since the invasion of the country in 2003, stirring heated and bitter debates. Hence it is thought the time is opportune to give the readers the opportunity to understand the background and history of the industry to enable them to form a balanced and level headed understanding of the current grave situation.
The current debates deal mainly with the reconstruction of Iraqs dilapidated oil and gas production and export facilities, the development of some of the old undeveloped and many of the newly discovered oil and gas fields, the disputed legal status of the newly discovered oil and gas fields in the Kurdish region, the controversial draft Hydrocarbon Law, the contested award of the several production Sharing Agreements to a number of international oil companies and the confused long term planning of the industry and the optimum level of production.