New Iraqi Oil Minister Sets Out Priorities

Jabbar al-Luaibi was sworn in as Iraq’s new Oil minister on 15 August and has wasted no time in getting to grips with his new mandate.

Prime Minister Haidar al-‘Abadi had been acting oil minister since May, following ‘Adil ‘Abd al-Mahdi’s announcement in March that he would be absent from office until parliament examined his resignation. Deputy Oil Minister Fayadh al-Nema took over day-to-day responsibility.

Mr Luaibi was previously nominated for the position in April. He is a Basrawi and previously headed up the South Oil Company which oversees production in Iraq’s oil producing heartland of Basra. His appointment might help improve relations between Baghdad and Basra, where resentment that the province doesn’t benefit financially from its oil production runs deep. (CONTINUED - 1000 WORDS)