Iraq oil minister Hussain al-Shahristani under fire

Hussain al-Shahristani is under fire for attempting to replace the current director of the Iraqi North Oil Company with an aide of his who, ostensibly, is a loyal political and economic partner.

Staff at North Oil threatened to go on strike and halt oil production if he goes ahead. According to Dubai’s Al-Sharqiyah, North Oil employees criticised Shahristani for appointing his own, personal, aides in the oil ministry and Iraq’s oil companies for the purposes of influencing the country’s oil contracts and revenues for personal and party-political purposes.

The Iraq National Oil Company (INOC) was founded in 1966 by the Iraqi government. It was empowered to operate all aspects of the oil industry in Iraq except for refining which was already being run by the Oil Refineries Administration (1952) and local distribution which was also already under government control.

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