Baghdad’s hastily revived Iraq National Oil Company (INOC) will be a “financial partner” with French giant TotalEnergies’ $27bn energy sector megadeal (MEES, 10 September). The announcement was made by Iraq’s minister of oil and president of INOC, Ihsan Ismaael, after INOC secured the approval of the country’s cabinet on 5 October, just five days before early parliamentary elections. Mr Ismaael subsequently told this week’s Energy Intelligence Forum that INOC will take at least a 40% stake in the project.

The outgoing government has swiftly pushed through the re-establishment of INOC in the buildup to the elections, with Iraq’s regional state oil companies now reporting to INOC rather than the ministry of oil (MEES, 17 September). The goal is for INOC to “expand its commercial and financial activity” and build “firm partnerships” with international companies says Mr Ismaael. (CONTINUED - 941 WORDS)