Chevron Phillips Chemical, the chemical joint venture between Chevron and Phillips 66, has signed a letter of intent with the Iraqi Ministry of Industry & Minerals to conduct a feasibility study for a new integrated petrochemical complex. A Chevron Phillips spokeswoman declined to give further details about the potential project, citing company policy against commenting publicly on negotiations. However, according to a report posted on the ministry’s website, the scope of the project would be the new petrochemical complex as well as the refurbishment of existing petrochemical facilities in Iraq’s Basra province. Despite its oil and gas resources, wars and United Nations sanctions have kept Iraq’s chemical industry tiny compared with those of other countries in the Persian Gulf. Before the 2003 U.S.-led invasion, a small ethylene cracker, with about 130,000 metric tons of annual capacity, operated in Basra. Another report says that the ministry is also studying petrochemical developments with Shell. The Anglo-Dutch oil giant formed a joint venture with Mitsubishi Corp. and Iraq’s South Gas Co. last year to gather and process natural gas from Iraqi oil fields.