Iraq Oil & Gas News


Iraq to Increase Oil Share to Asia in 2019

By John Lee.

Iraq has allocated 67 percent of its oil exports for 2019 to Asia, with 20 percent going to the Europe and 13 percent to the United States (or to according to Reuters, to North and South America).

In a statement, the Ministry of Oil said the allocation was made based on the importance of each market in terms of the volume of demand, and the price per barrel.

It added that Oil Minister Thamer al-Ghadhban directed a balanced policy in dealings with the global oil market, to maintain the stability of the markets and to achieve the best interest of Iraq’s economy.

Reuters reports that Asia received around 60 percent of Iraq’s oil exports in March 2018.

(Sources: Ministry of Oil, Reuters)

Gas Imports from Iran Interrupted

By John Lee.

Gas exports from Iran to Iraq have reportedly been interrupted as authorities in Iran repair pipeline damage caused during a recent earthquake.

The gas is used for electricity generation, with the cut reducing available power by 2,500 megawatts (MW).

Supplies are expected to be restored over the coming days.

(Sources: Iraq Oil Report, Reuters)

(Picture: Iran-Iraq gas pipeline during construction. Picture credit: Shana)

260+ attend IBBC Iraq Reconstruction Conference

IBBC welcomed 260+ delegates to Dubai to discuss ‘Iraq – Reconstruction & Rebuilding, how to deliver Vision’ with expert Industry, Government and International Organisations on 25th November

Iraq Britain Business Council held its annual Autumn Conference in Dubai yesterday on the 25th November at the Address Dubai Marina in Dubai.

The event hosted many speakers from the major companies operating in Iraq including IOCs, Logistics, Finance and Legal and Infrastructure, as well as Government Officials from the UK, UAE, Iraq, The World Bank and IMF to discuss the key issues facing Iraq’s economy today. IBBC welcomed over 260 delegates at the event for its largest ever attendance.

Under the Chairmanship of Vikas Handa, IBBC Representative in the UAE, Baroness Nicholson of Winterbourne, President of IBBC and The Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy to Iraq opened the conference alongside H.E. Abdulla Ahmed Al Saleh, Undersecretary of the UAE Ministry of Economy for Foreign Trade & Industry Professor Sabah Mushatat, Prime Minister’s Advisor for Reconstruction and Investment. H.E. Bengan Rikani, Iraqi Minister for Housing, Reconstruction & Public Municipalities, Government of the Republic of Iraq. Michael Townshend, Regional President BP Middle East and Jon Wilks CMG, Her Majesty’s Ambassador to Iraq.

HE Abdulla Ahmed Al Saleh

IBBC was honoured to have HE Abdulla alSaleh give a keynote speech at the IBBC Conference in Dubai for the third year running, His Excellency reaffirmed the UAE’s commitment to building a diverse and prosperous Iraq as per the IBBC’s mission statement. Professor Mushatat delivered a message from the Prime Minister of Iraq H.E. Adil Abdul-Mahdi delivering the PMs support for the development of the Private Sector and Foreign Enterprise in Iraq and complimenting IBBC as a trusted partner to achieve these goals.

H.E. Bengan Rikani spoke of the challenges ahead to meet the population growth of Iraq, the continuing efforts to rebuild liberated areas and the infrastructure projects underway. Ambassador Jon Wilks highlighted the importance of Iraq to the British economy, where trade has increased by 10% in the last year alone and stressed the commitment of PM Theresa May, Liam Fox MP Secretary of State for International Trade and DFID to facilitating Trade between the UK & Iraq.

“Now is the time to look again at the Iraq Market”
Her Majesty’s Ambassador Jon Wilks CMG

Michael Townshend reminded the audience that there was more Oil available globally than humanity could consume and that the Rumaila’s oilfield operated by BP in Iraq was not only one of the largest but also one of the most economic fields in the globe, providing Iraq with the lion share of its incomes.

Michael Townshend, BP

This year’s Agenda focused on the key issues of how Iraq can rebuild its towns and cities and develop its economy and evolving Infrastructure and Utilities with an emphasis on expanding Oil & Gas production, improving the Regulatory Framework and Financial systems and exploring the role of Logistics in moving people and materials into and around the country.

Conference Sessions & Speakers:

Logistics – Imports/Exports, People & Goods

Beverley Simpson, Director – Iraq, Department of International Trade; Rolls-Royce; SKA International Group; Basrah Gateway Terminal; G4S

Regulatory & Financial Framework – Encouraging International Investment

Management Partners; Dr Sabah Mushatat, Investment & Reconstruction Advisor to the Prime Minister of Iraq; National Bank of Iraq; IMF; AFC Iraq Fund; Eversheds-Sutherland

Energy – Increasing Production

Shell; Chevron; GE

Infrastructure – Rebuilding & Utilities Supply

IFC; Wood; EAMES; Siemens; Prof. Frank Gunter, Lehigh University

Ms Duha Mohammed, Capital Bank of Iraq

The conference also featured the highly successful roundtable discussions, where delegates engaged in dynamic and concentrated debates on the country issues which matter most. Delegates also enjoyed a pre-conference reception on 24th November at the Address Dubai Marina, as well as many networking opportunities throughout the event.

IBBC would like to thank the efforts of its sponsors Rolls Royce, Serco, SKA International Group, Siemens, GE, Basra Gateway Terminal and Khudairi Group.

IBBC also held a Tech Forum on 25th November under the Chairmanship of IBBC Marketing Consultant Ashley Goodall. The forum ran in parallel to the conference at the same venue. Some of the most important innovators of Tech in Iraq spoke on Fintech, the Consumer Economy, E-Government and the Start-Up Economy. Speakers included representatives from EY Iraq, Avaya, Citi Bank, Restrata Group, Microsoft, Khudairi Group, VentureSouq, Careem and the International Development Bank.

IBBC is particularly grateful to Ms Suha Mohammed, DG for payments at the Iraqi Central Bank, and to Mr Hiwa Afandi, DG of the Information Technology Department of the Kurdistan Regional Government for participating in this event.

Tech companies are already disrupting the heavily state dominated Iraqi economy and are the bearers of hope for tangible change in a country that has an extremely young and tech savvy population and has an urgent need to create hundred of thousands new jobs every year.

For any enquires please email london@webuildiraq.org

(Source: IBBC)

Oil Ministry Finalises Export Figures for October

By John Lee.

Iraq’s Ministry of Oil has announced final oil exports for October of 107,821,261 barrels, giving an average for the month of 3.478 million barrels per day (bpd), a slight decrease from the 3.560 bpd exported in September.

These exports from the oilfields in central and southern Iraq amounted to 107,530,008 barrels, giving $7.898 billion in revenue, while exports by the North Oil Company amounted to 291,253 barrels, giving revenues of $10,339,481.

Revenues for the month were  $7.908 billion at an average price of $73.348 per barrel.

September export figures can be found here.

(Source: Ministry of Oil)

30% Gas Production Increase at Khor Mor Field

Dana Gas and Crescent Petroleum Announce 30% Gas Production Increase in Kurdistan Region

Dana Gas, the Middle East’s leading publicly-listed regional natural gas company, and its partner Crescent Petroleum, have announced achievement of a 30% increase in production capacity at the Khor Mor field in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, which the companies jointly operate on behalf of Pearl Petroleum.

This increase delivers much-needed gas supply to fuel power plants in the region, and marked a major milestone as the companies commemorate 10 years of continuous production in the region in a special ceremony with the Kurdistan Regional Government in Erbil.

The expansion at the Khor Mor gas processing plant consisted of a series of plant additions and modifications to de-bottleneck throughput, raising output capacity from 305 MMscfd of natural gas to 400 MMscfd, with over 15,000 barrels per day of condensate.

The Plant, which began operating in 2008, supplies natural gas from the Khor Mor field by pipeline to power plants in the towns of Chemchemal and Erbil, and will soon supply a new plant in Bazian. The Khor Mor Plant also produces LPG and NGL, which are sold and trucked to the local markets.

Under a Gas Sales agreement signed in January 2018 with the KRG Ministry of Natural Resources, Pearl Petroleum will sell the additional quantities of gas to supply the power stations with affordable, environmentally favourable fuel, and further enhance electricity supplies.

The plant expansion comes online as Pearl celebrates a decade of production in the KRI. At a ceremony in Erbil attended by Kurdish Regional Government Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani, Minister of Natural Resources Dr. Ashti Hawrami, and other senior officials, Board Members and senior executives from the companies commemorated the partnership between the companies and the KRG in delivering progress and improved services to the people of the region over the past decade.

Total investment in the Kurdistan Gas Project to date exceeds $1.4 billion with total cumulative production over 250 million barrels of oil equivalent (boe), which has resulted in over $20 billion of fuel cost savings and economic benefits for the Kurdistan Region and Iraq as a whole. Further investment is underway to expand production to 900mmscfd per over the coming 3 years, together with associated liquids.

Mr. Majid Jafar, CEO of Crescent Petroleum and Board Managing Director of Dana Gas, commented:

This production increase marks an important milestone as we also commemorate ten years of continuous production, and the beginning of a new chapter of expansion in operations and production which will see a further investment of over $600 million over the coming few years and a more than doubling of production again.

“The gas we have produced has led to significant fuel savings and social and economic value for the economy, and we hope to grow this in the years to come from the significant resources of these world class fields, for the benefit of the Kurdistan Region and all of Iraq.”

Dr. Patrick Allman-Ward, CEO of Dana Gas, added:

“Despite many challenges over the past ten years we are proud to have maintained our production levels and operations and now with the settlement of all past receivables last summer and continuous payments since then, we look forward to significantly growing production to meet the growing demand for gas and electricity in the Kurdistan Region and Iraq as a whole.”

In August 2017, Pearl Petroleum reached a full and final settlement with the KRG of the arbitration between them, including receiving $1 billion in cash from the KRG for past receivables and committing to expand their investment and operations in the region.

These expansion plans include a multi-well drilling program now underway in both the Khor Mor & Chemchemal fields, as well as installation of additional gas processing and liquids extraction facilities.

Operation full-time staff numbers are over 600 with over 80% local staff, and training programmes to increase this figure further. In addition, the companies has contributed to local communities with support for local power generation, education and healthcare facilities, as well as support programmes for internally displaced people in Iraqi.

The Kurdistan Gas Project was established in 2007 as Dana Gas and Crescent Petroleum entered into agreement with the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) for exclusive rights to appraise, develop, produce, market, and sell petroleum from the Khor Mor and Chemchemal fields in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq (KRI).

Production from the newly built plant in Khor Mor began 15 months later, in October 2008, an industry record. In 2009, Pearl Petroleum was formed as a consortium with Dana Gas and Crescent Petroleum as shareholders, and with OMV, MOL, and RWE joining the consortium subsequently with a 10% share each.

(Source: Dana Gas)

ShaMaran acquires Larger Stake in Atrush

ShaMaran Petroleum Corporation refers to the agreement announced on June 4, 2018 whereby the Company’s wholly owned subsidiary, General Exploration Partners, Inc. (“GEP”), agreed in a sale and purchase agreement (the “SPA”) with Marathon Oil KDV B.V. (“MOKDV”) ,a wholly owned subsidiary of Marathon Oil Corporation (“Marathon”), to acquire from MOKDV a further 15% working interest in the Atrush Block Production Sharing Contract in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq (“the Acquisition”).

The underlying agreements governing the development and operation of the Atrush block require that both the Minister of Natural Resources of the Kurdistan Governmental Authority (“MNR”) as well as TAQA Atrush BV (“TAQA”), the other owner of a participating interest in, and the operator of, the Atrush block, consent to the assignment of the participating interest from MOKDV to GEP. At the time, the MNR gave assurance of providing its consent to the assignment, however, TAQA unreasonably refused to provide its consent to the Acquisition.

As a result of TAQA’s unreasonable refusal to provide consent, Marathon re-issued an offer to acquire MOKDV, a corporate transaction which does not require TAQA consent, with the result being that the Company is now engaged in a new bidding process for the Marathon interest in the Atrush block. There is no assurance that any offer by the Company or GEP, if submitted, will result in the acquisition of the increased interest in the Atrush block.

In the meantime, the Company is reviewing all available options.

(Source: ShaMaran)

SOMO Restarts Export of Kirkuk Oil via Turkey

By John Lee.

Baghdad has reached an agreement with Kurdish authorities to resume exports from the Kirkuk oilfields, via the Turkish port of Ceyhan (pictured).

In a statement on Friday, the Ministry of Oil said between 50,000 and 100,000 barrels per day would be exported through the pipeline on behalf of the Baghdad-controlled State Oil Marketing Organization (SOMO).

S&P Global Platts says SOMO has not exported any crude oil from Ceyhan since June 2017.

(Sources: Ministry of Oil, S&P Global Platts)

Iraq Working to make Money, not Burn it up in Gas Flares

By Adnan Abu Zeed for Al Monitor. Any opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.

Iraq working to make money, not burn it up in gas flares

Iraq plans to expand capacity at its oil refineries while at the same time reducing the amount of gas that is burned off during oil production. Instead of wasting the gas, the country will reap the benefits of putting it to good use.

New Oil Minister Thamer al-Ghadhban announced Oct. 31 that he will pay particular attention to oil-rich Basra in southern Iraq, an area where services have been neglected and people are angry.

Iraq continues to burn off most of the gas associated with oil production in its fields because it lacks sufficient facilities to capture the gas.

Click here to read the full story.

Sanctions Halt Iraqi Oil Exports to Iran

By Adnan Abu Zeed for Al Monitor. Any opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.

Iraq’s new Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi has opted for the policy of his predecessor, Haider al-Abadi, by committing himself to the US sanctions on Iran.

A few hours after he was sworn in, Abdul Mahdi stated Oct. 26 that when it comes to said sanctions, priority will be given to Iraq’s interests and independence.

Nevertheless, Iraq is seemingly incapable of doing without Iran, given their close bilateral economic ties. For this reason only, Iraq demanded that the United States allow the country to continue to import vital Iranian gas and energy supplies and food products. Washington consented Nov. 2, provided that payments not be made in US dollars.

Oil exports from the Kirkuk field, however, are excluded. Iraq’s new Oil Minister Thamer Ghadhban stressed that his country will “review” its current oil exports to Iran.

Click here to read the full story.

Iraq Exemption from US Sanctions on Iran Energy

Iraq Granted Exemption from US Sanctions on Iran’s Energy Exports

Iraq will continue to have access to the energy it needs from Iran to generate and supply electricity, Brian Hook, the special representative for Iran at the US State Department, said.

“Iraq has been granted an exemption” to the energy sanctions the US has re-imposed on Iran, Hook said Monday on a media conference call without providing details.

Iraq is still importing natural gas and electricity from neighboring Iran and has set up a bank account to process payments in Iraqi dinars, according to two Iraqi government officials, who asked not to be identified because they’re not authorized to speak to media, Bloomberg reported on Tuesday.

Iraq’s central bank officials said in August that the country’s economy is so closely linked to Iran that Baghdad would ask Washington for permission to ignore some US sanctions.

Iraq imports crucial supplies from its neighbor including gas for power stations.

(Source: Tasnim, under Creative Commons licence)