The World Bank concluded at its governors’ meeting on 12-13 April that it could play a role in Iraq even without the UN lifting sanctions, but called for a multilateral approach to Iraqi reconstruction. Warnings have been emerging from various quarters in recent days that, while the Iraqi oil industry may be in a physical condition to resume production more swiftly than expected, exports – crucial to US plans for financing reconstruction – could be delayed if no new UN resolution is passed on the oil-for-food programme. ‘There is a legal problem,’ says Algerian Energy Minister Chakib Khelil. ‘A lot of water will run under the bridges of Baghdad before we see it [Iraqi oil exports].’ A modified oil-for-food resolution passed after the outbreak of war, transferring authority for negotiating contracts to the UN Secretary-General, expires on 12 May.