(Reuters) Last October, at the height of a political crisis in Iraq’s Kurdistan region, a letter arrived at the Iraqi oil ministry in Baghdad from Igor Sechin, head of Kremlin oil major Rosneft (ROSN.MM). The Baghdad government was showing a “lack of constructive position and interest” about Rosneft’s offer to develop southern Iraqi oilfields, Sechin wrote in the letter, a copy of which was seen by Reuters. Kurdistan, a region of about 6 million people in northern Iraq, had just tried and failed to break away from the rest of the country.
BY PEPE ESCOBAR
'Pipelineistan' has a long history, but with its Belt and Road Initiative, China is set to be the top game-changer
The ASEAN Master Plan for Connectivity (AMPC) and China’s Belt and Road Initiative have major commonalities. Both envisage transport connectivity as a way of bringing countries closer to one another, facilitating better access to trade, investment, tourism and people-to-people exchanges. Similar to the BRI project, AMPC calls for a system of roads and railways to link contiguous members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations with one another, as well as a system of ports for...