Oil Tycoon: Our Troops Died ... We're "Entitled" to Sweet Contracts in Iraq!
After all that, it looks like the Iraqis are cutting some big deals to develop their massive oil wealth -- but with the mushy Europeans and the damn Chi-coms!
Iraq's Oil Minister Hussain al-Shahristani told a Washington conference on Wednesday that his government was happy with the energy auction it held earlier this year. The auction was the first chance for foreign oil firms to compete for Iraqi oil since the U.S.-led invasion in 2003.
BP and the Chinese oil company CNPC were the only firms to win a contract in Iraq's bid round this summer, the first chance for foreign oil firms to compete for Iraqi oil since the U.S.-led invasion in 2003. Seven other oil and gas fields failed to attract bidders on the terms Iraq offered.
But a consortium headed by Italy's ENI (ENI.MI: Quote, Profile, Research) said last week it signed a deal to develop the giant Zubair field for a remuneration fee of $2 a barrel. At Iraq's oilfield auction in June, the consortium refused to go below $4.40 a barrel.
Another consortium headed by Exxon is still in the running for one project, but that doesn't mollify hedge-fund gazillionaire -- and natural gas honcho -- T-Boone Pickens. He's none-too-happy:
Oil tycoon T. Boone Pickens told Congress on Wednesday that U.S. energy companies are "entitled" to some of Iraq's crude because of the large number of American troops that lost their lives fighting in the country and the U.S. taxpayer money spent in Iraq.
"They're opening them (oil fields) up to other companies all over the world ... We're entitled to it," Pickens said of Iraq's oil. "Heck, we even lost 5,000 of our people, 65,000 injured and a trillion, five hundred billion dollars."
"We leave there with the Chinese getting the oil," Pickens said.
Nothing new -- In August T-Boone called on the administration to "demand" oil contracts from Iraq before considering a withdrawal ($$). But it is an unusually brazen admission that many energy bigs did in fact consider "blood-for-oil" to be a straightforward deal.