It seems the Iraqi and American governments are not waiting to pass the controversial oil law to develop Iraq’s oil as things are moving a pace in the oil sector.

Last week, General David Petraeus called on “large Western corporations” to invest in Iraq’s energy sector as Iraq looks outside to boost oil, gas and power production. Petraeus, who as commander of Multi-National Force-Iraq said: “The prime minister is very keen on getting large Western corporations re-engaged in the oil and electricity sectors.” 

On Sunday, the Oil Ministry said it has invited local and international oil companies to bid for contracts including one to develop the Akkas gas field in a Sunni area in the western part of the country, which has an estimated reserves of more than 2.15 trillion cubic feet.

This week brings news that Iraq’s Oil Ministry has invited local and international oil companies to bid for contracts providing technical support for two major oil fields in southern and northern Iraq.

Companies interested in providing 3D seismic surveys for the Kirkuk field in the north and Rumaila oil field in the south must meet the ministry’s deadline of April 30. The two fields are among Iraq’s 10 “super giant” fields.

Yesterday, Russian President Vladimir Putin called on Iraq to support Russian investments as the head of oil major LUKOIL arrived in Baghdad in a final bid to revive a Saddam Hussein-era $3.7 billion deal to develop West Qurna oilfield in southern Iraq.

Putin’s appeal to Iraq, in a letter to Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, was the highest-level intervention to date. “Our companies are ready to increase their contribution to rebuilding and modernising Iraq’s economic infrastructure, primarily in the oil and gas industries where we have accumulated large experience and have good prospects for the future,” the Kremlin quoted Putin as saying in the letter.

Five years after the invasion, the scramble is most definitely on…