fancy weekend colour ;)



This is where ExxonMobil finds itself at the moment. Saddled with a low-paying oilfield in Iraq, Tillerson decided more than a year ago to pick up and sign a deal with the northern autonomous region of Kurdistan, which offered much better terms. Only, that is regarded as illegal in Baghdad, which reserves for itself the right to negotiate all oil deals across the land. Baghdad has threatened military action should ExxonMobil actually commit a drill bit to the soil. 

But ExxonMobil isn’t going to leave Kurdistan—the terms are too good. Instead, it would like to somehow calm things down and work in both the north and the south. In order to achieve that tall order, it has called on expert hands. Notably, however, when it came to talking turkey, Tillerson did not walk into the room with Rice, Hadley or Jeffrey. He sat with Gamal Helal.