Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Baiji's looting and dim economic prospects for Sunni Iraq post ISIS

The linked article discusses the systematic looting of the Baiji refinery complex in Iraq. 

I believe the refinery is critical to the economic viability of Sunni areas in Iraq and to the economic integration of Sunni Iraq with Kurdish even Shia areas.  By that I think refined petrochemicals, namely gasoline, is critical to putting Sunni areas into the value added chain.  One might hope that Kurds would pipe or truck oil from its fields around Kirkuk to the refinery for processing.

But if the refinery is being dismantled and looted either deliberately or by mafia like Shia militias, then the consequence is dire for a meaningful Iraqi state that would include former ISIS controlled areas.

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