ExxonMobil has signed a deal to explore oil assets in Kurdistan with the Kurdish regional government (KRG), KRG officials claimed at an oil and gas conference in Erbil over the weekend.
Ashti Awrami, the KRG’s minister for natural resources told the Financial Times that the regional government had been in talks with at least three large oil firms about deals.
But the alleged deal could prove controversial as the Iraqi national government has a history of challenging the breakaway region’s right to deal with its assets. Iraq Deputy Prime Minister Hussain al-Shahristani has since issued a statement expressing disapproval of the deal, reported the Associated Press.
ExxonMobil declined to comment.