Washington (AP) Iraq could take in as much as 70 billion dollars in oil revenues this year.
A special U.S. auditor for Iraq, Stuart Bowen, tells the Associated Press that “Iraq is enjoying a record windfall” in a boom that has been fueled by record oil prices, record production and record exports.
Bowen's previously undisclosed information is likely to increase the call among U.S. lawmakers for the Iraqis to shoulder more of the costs of rebuilding their nation.
The Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman, Michigan Democrat Carl Levin, says he favors legislation that would block U.S. money from being spent on Iraq reconstruction and possibly other war-related costs.
Some senate Republicans have proposed a separate bill that calls for Iraq or its neighbors to pay more for reconstruction.