GKP Shares Gain following Update

Shares in Gulf Keystone Petroleum (GKP), operator of the Shaikan Field in Iraqi Kurdistan, were trading up 10 percent on Friday after the company issued an operational and corporate update.


  • Agreement with the Kurdistan Regional Government’s (“KRG”) Ministry of Natural Resources (“MNR”) and MOL Hungarian Oil & Gas plc (“MOL”) has been reached in relation to the investment plans to increase gross production capacity to 55,000 barrels of oil per day (“bopd”) in the next 12 to 18 months.
  • Gulf Keystone has initiated contracting and procurement activities to implement the 2018 approved capital expenditure of approximately $91 million gross ($73 million net to GKP), which includes workovers in existing wells (electric submersible pumps (“ESPs”) and tubing replacements), drilling of a new well, facilities improvement and plant debottlenecking.
  • The remainder of the required capital expenditure which is currently estimated to be between $175 million to $215 million gross (as previously set out in the 2017 Full Year Results) to achieve 55,000 bopd gross production capacity is expected to be part of the 2019 investment plan (which will also include activities related to the further development of the field).
  • The Company continues to work on the revised Field Development Plan, which is expected to be submitted to the MNR in Q3 2018. The Company will provide an update on the details of the investment plans for the 75,000 bopd and up to 110,000 bopd phases when finalised.
  • Safety performance remains strong with over 3 million man hours without a lost-time incident achieved since 2015.
  • Plant uptime between 1 January 2018 and 31 May 2018 has been outstanding at over 99%, leading to an average gross production of 32,138 bopd for the period, just above the upper end of our 27,000-32,000 bopd guidance for 2018. Full-year guidance for 2018 remains unchanged.
  • A major milestone has been achieved with cumulative production from the Shaikan Field reaching 50 million barrels. As a result, in line with the terms of the Shaikan Production Sharing Contract (“Shaikan PSC”) and our previous disclosure, a production bonus in the amount of $20 million ($16 million net to GKP) is now payable to the KRG.
  • Hook-up of the 400m spur pipeline from Production Facility 2 to the Atrush export line is in its final stage and expected to be operational shortly. This will eliminate trucking requirements for a significant share of Shaikan production which will reduce HSE exposure and is expected to improve netbacks to the Company. Pipeline tie-in of Production Facility 1 will be part of the 2019 investment plan.
  • Payments from the KRG have been received on a regular basis throughout the year. The Company has received gross payments of $136.7 million ($107.3 million net to GKP) year to date.
  • The Company had cash amounting to $222 million as at 21 June 2018.
  • The Company continues its dialogue with the MNR and MOL in order to achieve further contractual and commercial clarity in relation to amendments of the Shaikan PSC which it anticipates being concluded in Q3 2018.

Commenting, Jón Ferrier, CEO, said:

“We are very pleased with the progress we have made in recent months on key commercial and operational matters and are delighted that Gulf Keystone is now back to investment mode, with the objective of achieving 55,000 bopd production capacity in the next 12 to 18 months; an important step towards the development of the full potential of the Shaikan field.”

(Source: GKP)

Oryx: Successful Appraisal Well at Banan Field

Oryx Petroleum Announces Successful Appraisal Well at the Banan field

Oryx Petroleum has announced an update on the drilling of an appraisal well targeting the Tertiary reservoir at the Banan field in the Hawler license area in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.

As at December 31, 2017, 26 million barrels (“bbl”) of unrisked gross (100%) best estimate (2C) contingent oil resources sub-classified as development unclarified (risked: 13 million bbl) were attributed to the Banan Tertiary reservoir by Netherland, Sewell & Associates, Inc. based on data obtained during the drilling of the Banan-2 well in 2014.

In late May and early June 2018, the Banan-3 well was drilled to a depth of approximately 500 metres and completed in open hole partially penetrating the Tertiary reservoir. Oil production from the well has been enabled by the use of a jet pump and has averaged approximately 1,500 bbl/d with 50 scf/stb of gas and no water over the last six days of uninterrupted production.

The stock tank oil has a gravity of 26 degrees API. The Corporation intends to continue the extended production test of the well with the objective of assessing the well’s performance, identifying options for increasing production and obtaining information to refine plans for additional appraisal of the Banan Tertiary reservoir.

Crude oil produced at the Banan field is currently hauled to the Hawler tanker terminal where it is offloaded and then pumped to the Demir Dagh storage system. It is blended with crude oil produced from other Hawler license area wells before being exported through the Kurdistan Region-Turkey Export Pipeline.

Based on results from the Banan-3 well, the Corporation expects that, in its reserves report for year-end December 31, 2018, oil reserves will be attributed to the Banan Tertiary reservoir.

The drilling of the Zey Gawra-3 well targeting the Cretaceous reservoir at the Zey Gawra field in the Hawler license area is in progress with results expected in the coming weeks. The Zey Gawra-3 well is the first well to be drilled in the Hawler license area utilising a horizontal well design.

The drilling or re-entry of wells targeting the Banan Cretaceous, Banan Tertiary and Demir Dagh Cretaceous reservoirs are planned, subject to performance of existing wells, in the second half of 2018.

Commenting today, Oryx Petroleum’s Chief Executive Officer, Vance Querio (pictured), stated:

“We are very pleased to have resumed operations at the Banan field with a successful appraisal well targeting the Tertiary reservoir. The average production rate achieved thus far is consistent with expectations and export of the oil is proceeding smoothly.

“Total average daily crude oil production from the Hawler license area is now approximately 5,300 barrels per day. The drilling of the Zey Gawra-3 well targeting the Cretaceous reservoir is in progress with results expected in the coming weeks. The drilling or re-entry of four more wells is planned for the second half of 2018 subject to the performance of existing wells.”

(Source: Oryx Petroleum)

Petrel Resources takes €4.1m Impairment on Iraq

By John Lee.

Irish-based Petrel Resources has taken a €4.1 million impairment of its investment in Iraq:

In August 2013, Petrel did a deal with Amira in Iraq whereby, for US$500,000 in cash plus 18,947,368 initial consideration shares (which were to be locked-in until spudding of the first oil well by our partners), Petrel acquired a 5% full free carry in Amira’s activities in the Wasit province in Iraq which was then, and still is, a relatively stable Shia dominated province. 

“The expectation was that provinces in Iraq would offer licences in their own right rather than solely through the central government in Baghdad.  This did not happen.  In fact, nothing happened.  As mentioned above, we have therefore impaired our investment.

However, the company said it remains interested in oil opportunities in Iraq:

Iraq remains one of the very best oil provinces in the world.  The oil exploration potential is outstanding.  The improving political situation in Iraq has resulted in Petrel re-awakening an interest.  We have been there since 1999 and like the country. 

“We are discussing with Amira, our partner, how best to declare an interest in certain fields.  We are also re-establishing contacts in the administration.  It is very early days, but it does look as if Iraq is slowly re-opening for business, and we want to be there.

(Source: Petrel Resources)

New Career Opportunities in Iraq

By John Lee.

The United Nations has advertised new positions in Iraq:

(Source: UN)

(Picture: Finger pressing a new career start button, from Olivier Le Moal/Shutterstock)

New Career Opportunities in Iraqi Kurdistan

By John Lee.

The United Nations has advertised new positions in Iraqi Kurdistan:

(Source: UN)

(Picture: Success, growth, career, development signpost from 3D_Creation/Shutterstock)

Supreme Court Confirms Election Re-Count

By John Lee.

Iraq’s Supreme Federal Court has reportedly upheld a law mandating a nationwide recount of the votes from May’s parliamentary election, which had been ordered following claims from Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi that there had been serious violations.

The court has also ruled that the cancellation of votes from people overseas, the displaced, and Peshmerga was unconstitutional.

Earlier this month, Iraq’s top judicial authority, the Supreme Judicial Council, took over the Independent High Electoral Commission (IHEC), replacing the local heads in each of the provinces with judges.

Last month’s elections saw a low turnout, and an unexpected victory for Shia leader Moqtada al-Sadr.

(Sources: Reuters, AFP)

(Picture credit: Essam-al-Sudani)

Exxon Out of Desalination Project

By John Lee.

Talks between ExxonMobil and Iraq on the multi-billion-dollar Common Seawater Supply Project (CSSP) have reportedly broken down.

According to Reuters, the director general of the Basra Oil Company (BOC) told reporters that the BOC will award the contract through a tender process, which it expects to complete at the end of July.

It adds that the BOC has already shortlisted three companies from an initial list of seven for the contract.

(Source: Reuters)

UKEF Financed 3 Iraqi Projects last year

By John Lee.

UK Export Finance (UKEF) has published its annual report and accounts for 2017 to 2018, in which it lists three export projects supported in Iraq:

  • Enka UK Construction Ltd received letter of credit guarantees and supplier credit totalling £87,910,650 for the construction of a gas-fired power plant for Iraq’s Ministry of Electricity;
  • GE Global Services GMBH received buyer credit and direct lending totalling £87,211,216 for the construction of a gas-fired power plant for Iraq’s Ministry of Electricity;
  • Fortress Diagnostics Ltd received export working capital of £112,258 to supply healthcare equipment to Iraq’s Ministry of Health.

(Source: UK Govt)

Genel, DNO, receive KRG Payment for March

By John Lee.

Genel Energy and DNO have said that the Tawke partners have received $62.19 million from the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) as payment for March 2018 crude oil deliveries to the export market from the Tawke licence.

Genel’s net share of the payment is $15.52 million.

The Taq Taq partners have received a gross payment of $6.20 million from the KRG for oil sales during March 2018; Genel’s net share of this payment is $3.41 million.

Genel has also received an override payment of $8.37 million from the KRG, representing 4.5% of Tawke gross licence revenues for the month of March 2018, as per the terms of the Receivable Settlement Agreement.

In total, Genel’s net share of payments relating to March 2018 exports totals $27.30 million.

(Source: Genel Energy)