Iraq, US majors in talks for $3bn petchem project

26 January 2007 10:35  [Source: ICIS news]

Iraq looking to rebuild petchem industrySINGAPORE (ICIS news)--Iraq is currently in discussions with US majors Chevron and ExxonMobil to build a $3bn petrochemical complex, and hopes that these would lead to the signing of a memorandum of understanding by July, a newswire reported on Friday.

Iraqā€™s minister for industry and minerals Fawzi Hariri said in an interview with Dow Jones in Washington that early-stage negotiations began this week.

Hariri, who took on the post in June 2006, reportedly said: ā€œIt will be one or the other company for this new facility, not both.ā€

He cited the issue of security as being a prominent highlight of the talks, given how Iraq has been featured in the media over the past year for the rampant sectarian violence that has broken out.

The interview said that Hariri sought to emphasise how the conflict had been limited to Baghdad.

Referring to possible joint ventures with other foreign companies, he expressed hope that discussions with Swiss-Swedish engineering company ABB Lummus, Dow Chemical and KBR over the rehabilitation of existing facilities would lead to tentative agreements by March.

The deal with ABB Lummus was reported to be worth $100m, while that with Dow Chemical could be $40m-50m, the minister said.

By: Keith Tan Liming
+65 6780 4359

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