It was on condition that Chad's churches, trade unions and non-governmental organisations monitored how oil revenues were spent.
This was meant to guaranteed that oil money was used to help reduce poverty in Chad but the new laws would give Chad more control over the money.
The bank has warned if Chad breaks its agreement, that is a breach of contract. Further funds will be halted, and repayment rates on the current loan increased.
World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz said the law was a deciding factor in the bank's financial support for the massive pipeline project in 1999.
But the government has accused the bank of treating Chadians like guinea pigs on which to experiment with different types of management.
It wants to use $36m of revenues held in a fund that is meant to tackle poverty to deal instead with the country's financial problems.
While we are not fully informed enough to take much of an opinion on the matter, we do know that:
Oil exports from land-locked Chad first started in November 2003 after the creation of a pipeline to the coast through neighbouring Cameroon.
By 30 June of this year it had earned $70.8m (£39.5m) for the 33.1 million barrels it sold abroad.
You'll note that in an era where oil costs $40+/gallon Chad earned ~$2.00/barrel of oil that it sold abroad. If Chadian oil is being sold at market rates then Exxon is pocketing a vast amount of the oil revenue. Apparently Chad feels the same way:
"We found that things need to be clarified about the commitments of Exxon-Mobil, ChevronTexaco and Petronas," said Therese Mekombe, head of the committee monitoring Chad's oil revenues.
"The Chadian population has its ears and eyes on radios and televisions, following with great hope the rising price of Brent (crude oil) in the international market."
Chad's Oil Minister Youssef Abassallah added that all it wanted was to see its 1998 agreement with the consortium "strictly respected".
He said: "If this issue is not settled amicably, we are going to seek international arbitration.
If Exxon's recent profits are any guide, the Chadian government may have a good case.
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