Iraq plans a big start to 2018 with a number of key projects set to get underway. In seemingly trying to expedite timeframes to secure signature before May’s planned parliamentary election it risks creating a logjam.

With total crude output of 4.41mn b/d in December (see p8), Iraq appears to be pumping close to de facto capacity (leaving aside the 280,000 b/d of Kirkuk capacity shut in as the Baghdad-Kurdistan political dispute has closed off the only viable export route). Of December...