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March 14, 2006 10:38PM
http://today.reuters.com/business/newsarticle.aspx?type=tnBusinessNews&storyID=nL14383072

Oil anarchy threatens Iraq's future

LONDON, March 14 (Reuters) - Rampant corruption and political anarchy have pushed Iraq's oil industry to the brink of collapse and may drive away the experts needed to save it.

Three years after the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, the country's oil exports have sunk to nearly half the level they were under former president Saddam Hussein.

Western-educated technocrats, who built up and ran Iraq's most vital sector, are in despair as rapid turnover at the oil ministry and state marketer have failed to establish authority.

"Things are worse than ever now. There's a limit to how much we can take," said an Iraqi executive, adding that many other veteran oilmen shared his view.
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