Jul 12, 2017

Iraq to open new oil and gas exploration to fund ISIS fight

Nabil al-Jurani / AP

Iraq, which has the world's fourth-largest oil reserves, announced this week it will be offering oil and gas exploration rights as part of its effort to root out ISIS from the region, per the AP. The measure is intended to boost energy revenues amid low oil prices.

Why it matters: Oil has been important to financing Iraq's security services and its fight against ISIS — for context, in 2014 94% of Iraq's federal revenue came from oil, per the IMF, and even amid the tensions in the region, Iraq stepped up its production last year, according to CNNMoney. Note also, U.S. imports from Iraq are up this year from last, per the EIA, and more than doubled between August and September 2016 alone.

The plan: Putting nine border exploration blocks up for bidding, according to Oil Minister Jabar Ali Al-Luaibi. Five are shared with Iran, three with Kuwait, and one in the Persian Gulf.

Go deeper

U.S. coronavirus updates: Majority of governors order residents to stay home

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

At least 28 state governors have ordered their residents to stay home to promote social distancing and limit community spread from the coronavirus pandemic as the U.S. copes with more than 144,000 positive cases — more than any other country in the world, per Johns Hopkins data.

The big picture: COVID-19 killed over 2,500 people in the U.S. by Monday. That's far fewer than in Italy, where over 10,700 people have died — accounting for a third of the global death toll. The number of people who've recovered from the virus in the U.S. exceeded 4,800.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 5 mins ago - Health

Maryland becomes latest state to issue coronavirus stay-at-home order

Gov. Larry Hogan. Photo: Jim Spellman/Getty Images

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan announced Monday he is ordering residents to stay at home effective 8 p.m. due to the coronavirus, except for those engaged in essential services, including health care and government functions.

The big picture: Maryland is the latest state to announce policies to enforce social distancing, which have affected almost 250 million Americans. More than 1.5 billion people worldwide had been asked to stay home as of last week.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 34 mins ago - Health

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 12 p.m. ET: 741,030 — Total deaths: 35,305 — Total recoveries: 156,838.
  2. U.S.: Leads the world in cases. Total confirmed cases as of 12 p.m. ET: 143,532 — Total deaths: 2,572 — Total recoveries: 4,865.
  3. Federal government latest: The White House will extend its social distancing guidelines until April 30 — Hospital ship the USNS Comfort arrives in Manhattan
  4. Public health updates: — White House COVID-19 response coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx said the 100,000 to 200,000 U.S. coronavirus death toll estimate is based on the presumption that citizens follow social-distancing guidelines "almost perfectly."
  5. Business latest: Macy's will furlough the majority of it's workers this week, as the chain's stores remain closed.
  6. 🎧 Podcast: Living with the coronavirus
  7. What should I do? Answers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingQ&A: Minimizing your coronavirus risk
  8. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

Subscribe to Mike Allen's Axios AM to follow our coronavirus coverage each morning from your inbox.