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Iraq’s oil in the maelstrom

Against the background of fiscal constraint imposed by low global oil prices, Iraq's oil and gas industry has become a victim of IS violence and a dispute among politicians in Baghdad that is paralysing the federal government

IS gun and suicide attacks at the end of July on the 175,000 b/d Bai Hassan oilfield and gas compressor station AB2 near Kirkuk in northern Iraq left five employees of the state-owned North Oil Company (NOC) dead. Production at Bai Hassan was halted and later resumed at 100,000 b/d. Gas production was re-routed but volumes were not affected. While NOC operates Bai Hassan field and the Avana Dome of the Kirkuk oilfield, both came under the control of the KRG at the time of the IS surge through northern Iraq in 2014. A dispute between the federal government and the KRG over the sovereignty of Kirkuk is one of the issues keeping relations tense between Baghdad and Erbil. Another concerns the K

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