Iraq’s veteran Oil Minister Thamir al-Ghadhban continued his ongoing reshuffle this week, sacking two advisers, confirming key deputy ministers, shuffling several officials at various state oil companies, and transferring the state’s fuel oil marketing responsibilities from the Iraqi Oil Tankers Company to Somo.

The flurry of activity comes amidst a time of great uncertainty both for the country’s oil sector and Iraq itself. The largest protests in years have resulted in hundreds of deaths and will likely cost Adil Abd Al-Mahdi the premiership (MEES, 8 November). And whilst the protests haven’t yet resulted in any qualitative changes to the all-important oil sector, the status quo appears in question. Mr Ghadhban was abroad for nearly a month due to family business, and Baghdad was unable to send a major delegation to Adipec in Abu Dhabi this week “due to multiple complications.” (CONTINUED - 226 WORDS)