Iraqi officials say a hotly debated proposed oil law will not favor Americans but acknowledge that foreign companies will be allowed to take their profits out of the country - an incentive to draw foreign investment.
The Oil Ministry has been struggling for months to reach a compromise over draft legislation to govern Iraq's most important industry and pave the way for much-needed investment and know-how to revitalize the devastated infrastructure.
But the measure faces strong objections by ethnic Kurds and concern about American influence in the sector.
"Without a decisive military victory, the US occupation of Iraq seems to be about to grab its oil prize by establishing a new sharing arrangement," the English-language Yemen Observer said Saturday, echoing a frequent criticism that the US-led invasion was aimed in part at capturing Iraq's oil.
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