Kuwait is considering whether to make changes to the board of its state-owned energy giant, Kuwait Petroleum Corp (KPC), after friction between the board and Oil Minister Ali Saleh al-Omair, sources aware of the matter told Reuters.
Changes to the board could be announced as soon as next week, the sources said on Wednesday, speaking on condition of anonymity as they were not authorized to talk to media.
“There is considerable disagreement between the minister and the board of KPC” on issues including major projects, mechanisms for managing the oil industry and the return of former officials to their jobs at the company, one source said.
Kamel al-Harami, an independent Kuwaiti oil consultant, also said changes were expected on the board, though he described the frictions as related more to personalities than to policies.”It’s like a game of musical chairs … Any minister wants to see his team and his men working with him,” Harami said.
There was no indication that there would be any change to the chief executive of KPC or to Kuwait’s policy towards crude oil production and OPEC, which is decided at a high level of government.
Omair, as well as spokesmen for the oil ministry and KPC, could not be reached for comment on Wednesday.Another source said a decision had been made to expand the board to 16 members from nine, allowing the appointment of more members sympathetic to Omair, but this was not set in stone.
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