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Iraq has had a rocky relationship with IOCs
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Iraq and IOCs: A complex web

Baghdad needs to improve its relationship with international partners. But beware assuming there are easy answers

Reports that Iraq’s tax authority has issued orders to prevent around 20 foreign energy firms from being able to secure visas for their personnel or to import materials, on the grounds of late tax payments, are another jarring reminder of the country’s long-rocky relationship with IOCs. But too many commentators have focused on addressing the ‘one’ reason why IOCs have fallen out of love with Iraq. In reality, it is far more complex. The very fact that various analysts do not agree but hit upon various themes as their preferred main driver—harsh contractual terms, the type of contract on offer, corruption, resource mismanagement or security conditions—is telling. That all these factors have



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