Wednesday, 31 December 2008

Iraq invites oil companies to develop nearly 90 pct of its oil reserves

Postwar Iraq has managed to open nearly 90 percent of its oil reserves in 2008 to international oil companies for development through two major bidding rounds that are planned to be finalized in mid and end of 2009, Sinan Salaheddin reports for the Associated Press.

Iraq is classified as the world's third largest in oil reserves with at least 115 billion barrels underneath, but decades of wars, bad management, U.N. economic sanctions, sabotage acts and insurgent attacks have kept these resources away from the Iraqis.

With these two rounds, Iraqi Oil Minister Hussein al-Shahristani plans to add 4 million to 4.5 million barrels a day to its current 2.4 million bpd within four to six years to help building its heavily damaged infrastructure and bringing life to its economy.

Oil and gas fields on offer in the first bidding round are: Kirkuk and Bai Hassab oil fields in the north, Rumaila, Zubair, West Qurna Phase 1 and Maysan oil fields--Buzurgan, Fauqa and Abu Ghirab--in the south, and Akkas gas field in western Iraq and Mansouria gas field in the east.

Oil and gas fields on offer in the second bidding round are: Majnoon, West Qurna Phase 2, Halfaya, Gharraf, Badra oil fields and Siba gas field in the south. East Baghdad, and the group of Kifl, West Kifl and Merjan in central.A group of Qamar, Gullabat and Naudman oil fields and Khashm al-Ahmar gas field in the east and Qayara and Nejma in the north.

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