US major ExxonMobil tells MEES that it has relinquished its stake in the Al Qosh block in north western Kurdistan. Following last year’s relinquishment of three blocks in Kurdistan, ExxonMobil is now left with just two of the six assets it controversially signed up to in 2011 (MEES, 21 November 2011). With the KRG reeling from its loss of Kirkuk, ExxonMobil’s diminished presence is a bitter blow.

The decision to sign contracts with the KRG was firmly opposed by the US Department...