Iraq’s oil production unscathed for now by Trump travel ban

Iraq won’t bar US citizens from entering the country, Prime Minister Haider Al-Abadi said, averting a potential disruption to the oil industry of Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC)’s second-biggest producer. US President Donald Trump issued an executive order on January 27 banning citizens of Iraq and six other Muslim-majority countries from entering the US, in the name of fighting terrorism. Iraqi lawmakers on Monday condemned the move, noting that Iraqi forces are on the front line in the battle against IS militants, and urged their government to reciprocate. A reciprocal ban would have denied entry to US oil workers in companies such as Exxon Mobil Corp., which support Iraq’s most important industry, and to American military personnel advising Iraqi forces in their offensive to oust the militants. Abadi said on Tuesday that those contributions outweighed the “damage” caused by the US ban. “We won’t apply the same rules,” the prime minister said. “Fighting terror is a strategic issue for us.” Iraq is the biggest oil supplier after Saudi Arabia in the OPEC. (Sam Wilkin and Khalid Al-Ansary/Bloomberg)

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