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Exxon Mobil mum on Iraqi snub

The Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) -- Exxon Mobil Corp. is one of the most aggressive Western oil producers working in Iraq. The American oil giant has moved so quickly that last year it signed production deals with the self-ruled Kurdish government despite objections from the Iraqi central government.

The move will cost Exxon, which is based in Irving, Texas, business in the future.

Dhia Jaafar, the head of Iraq's state-run South Oil Company, said this month that Exxon will be banned from bidding on another development project.

Exxon's chief of investment relations, David Rosenthal, wouldn't say much when asked for a reaction on Thursday during a conference call with investors after the company reported its quarterly earnings.

QUESTION: What do you make of Iraq's refusal to let you bid for new contracts?

ROSENTHAL: It's our intent to honor and fulfill those contractual obligations (that Exxon already has in Iraq). We continue to develop the field and do the things that we committed to do and, so, progress continues. But other than that, I really wouldn't have any further comments.