Volume 2 Chapter 7

First we are going to consider a short historical background, in particular the Sèvre, Lausanne and San Remo international negotiations after the First World War, to enable us to understand the origin of the today complexity led. We will then consider in some depth the root causes of the conflict, the tense relations between the two Oil Giants, Saudi Arabia and Iran. With these two countries together accounting for around a quarter of global oil reserves, their antagonistic relationship must be carefully analysed. From one side Saudi Arabia feels secure because of its privileged relationships with the USA, while Iran is ready for a fresh start on the world stage thanks to the “nuclear deal” which we will examine closely. Both of them will continue to receive high oil revenues because any reduction in the oil price will be compensated by volume increases. The chapter continues with an analysis of the oil situation in Iraq, including an in depth consideration of Kurdistan. Their very large potential will be unlocked and therefore the world economy will be awash with much more oil as a result. . The chapter ends with an analysis of the energy situation in Maghreb, in particular the present and likely future export of gas to the EU. We will see that their continued role as players in the global energy market is contingent upon radical political and structural reforms.