Saturday, 12.05.2015, 7:59
In the past couple of years or so, I have been tracking/reading all of the news pertaining Dana Gas oil company, based in the UAE, and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) lawsuit in London courts. Once I learned of this lawsuit, I began to research and investigate some oil contracts the KRG has signed with oil companies operating in Kurdistan. I also began to research and investigate the operations of some of those foreign oil companies in Kurdistan and found some very interesting, and questionable, practices!
After spending a great deal of time researching, and learning, about what is going on with the oil deals in Kurdistan, I published many articles on this website (Ekurd.net) detailing some of my findings. I made my findings public in the hope that the KRG would listen to my advice and act on them.
What I have discovered is very disturbing and “funny” accounting that these foreign oil companies operating in Kurdistan are practicing/using without hesitations or anyone within the KRG question them. While some of these oil companies, such as Gulf Keystone Petroleum (GKP), have seen their stock plummet by 95% in three short years, they have not changed the way they do business.
It is obvious that seasoned investors have seen how GKP operates and they have been liquidating their positions (sell their stock) and lost faith in GKP operations in Kurdistan. This is why their stock is in a coma- or nearly dead!!
I would suggest the KRG do the followings:
1- KRG needs to audit (using international auditing firm) all foreign oil companies prior to making any payments to them. I strongly believe that oil companies operating in a very dishonest manner when dealing with the KRG since they know that oil contracts and oil issues is something very new to the KRG and there is serious lack of knowledge and experience within the KRG oil ministry and personnel
2- KRG needs to remove the oil minister, and his advisers, as he/they seems to have created this huge problem for Kurdistan
3- KRG needs control the media since I believe the media is misleading/inflaming the public when it comes to oil issues in Kurdistan. I say that because I am constantly watching different TV channels in Kurdistan and it seems like no matter who they interview and bring on the TV screen, the guest(s) act as if they know everything! As a matter of fact, I have yet to hear one guest that has been interviewed on some TV stations in Kurdistan that knows, and make sense, what they are talking about!! I hear lots of babbling from those TV guests, but no substance at all.
It would seems like nowadays Kurdistan is full of twenty something year-old Kurdish “experts” in the oil and international business and give their “expert” opinion on national TV! Misleading the public in such despicable manner needs to stop.
The saddest thing about this is the fact that I personally know some of those “kids” in Kurdistan that I am referring to and they know nothing, have zero experience in international finance and transactions, zero experience in oil and yet, they are brought on TV screen act as if they know it all! It is absolutely disgusting to see this happening in Kurdistan and the KRG must put a stop to this madness immediately.
Since the KRG has very little time, 22 days to be exact, before having to pay out such exuberant amount ($1.98 Billion) to Dana Gas, I suggest the KRG take action now and consider my advice and suggestions. The KRG does not have the luxury of time and they need to act now and do not waste time and hope with time, things will “cool” off and go a way on its own!!
The KRG is not dealing with patient and understanding local Kurds in hope that in time things will “cool off” because foreigners, and hungry/aggressive foreign lawyers, do not cool off in time and will not go a way with time passing!!
Rizgar Xoshnaw, a senior Kurdish writer based in Washington, a longtime contributing writer and columnist for Ekurd.net.