United Arab Emirates (UAE)


Dana Gas gets $44m from KRG in 1H

By John Lee.

Dana Gas has said it has received $43.8 million in dividends from Pearl Petroleum Company Limited for condensate and LPG sales in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq (KRI) in the first half of 2018, including a $7 million payment for the month of June.

The company added that the capacity to process gas and condensate from the Khor Mor field (pictured) will increase by 580 MMscf/d and 20 mbbld, respectively, with the expansion programme is on track to deliver an increase in output of 80 MMscf/d by Q3 2018.

(Sources: Rudaw, Mubasher)

A Roadmap to Drive the Iraqi Economy Forward

By Sadek Ali.

Resounding Victory

At the height of its reach, Daesh occupied almost 40% of Iraq’s territory. A tragedy for the communities they enslaved and also for Iraq’s economy: the area occupeid produced 80 thousand barrels of crude oil in 2014. The December 2017 liberation of Iraq was therefore a significant release for both people and economy.

Iraq’s economy has proved extraordinarily resilient. It has weathered serious crises, and still suffers from real structural issues within the production and financial sectors, the result of a myriad causes including the lack of strategic economic policymaking and national resources drained by military operations.

Despite the heavy burden of military liberation, the Government of Iraq remains committed to resurrecting the economy, and quickly: overcoming challenges such as the cost of basic services and civil servant salaries. To get back on track it must deal with the gap in investments which must be financed through internal or external sources, all while developing a competitive and attractive investment environment.

A Revitalized Vision

In August 2015, Iraqi PM Dr. Haider Al Abadi proposed a series of reforms centered around government efficiency and anti-corruption. Alongside ongoing oil revenues, local economic reform measures that cut down on non-vital public expenditure and raise collection rates from sources such as customs, duties and other sources of public revenue, this pathway should have a substantial and measurable impact on the fiscal budget and domestic resources available.

The Government of Iraq also implemented a number of reforms aimed at increasing Iraq’s competitiveness on the investments and ease-of-doing-business index, through removing barriers and cutting down on red tape facing local and international investors. These reforms now allow entrepreneurs and investors to start up their operations in a much shorter time while streamlining the government record-keeping and tax accounting.

A New Dawn for Iraq

Fiscal reform policy effect can be seen in several sectors, and an increased stream of non-oil revenues is now apparent. A total of 2,219 and 2323 new private sector companies were registered in 2016 and 2017 respectively; the Iraqi securities exchange also witnessed an increased trading volume that grew from ID 516 bn to ID 900 bn in the same period.

The World Bank confirms that Iraq has been successful in implementing structural reforms in local regulation, helping to facilitate new businesses, supported by better access to credit and financing facilities.

“The Government of Iraq has launched a fundamental economic reform agenda based on the framework of its 2014-2018 Government Programme which put institutional economic reform and private sector development at the forefront of its priorities,” said Saruj Kumar Jaha, Regional Director for the Middle East at the World Bank.

The government has also strengthened the credit information infrastructure with the launch of a credit information bureau managed by the Iraqi Central Bank. As of January 2017, this includes five-year histories of 234,967 individual and 4,877 commercial loans.

The government has also succeeded in enhancing the country’s investment ecosystem and positioning, ratifying the following economic and investment agreements:

  • In 2015, Iraq joined The International Convention on the Settlement of Investment Disputes between States and Nationals of Other States (the ICSID Convention), one of the key instruments of international law that protect and promote foreign investment.
  • In 2017, Iraq ratified the United Nations Convention on Transparency in Treaty-based Investor-State Arbitration (the Mauritius Convention on Transparency).
  • In 2018, Iraq ratified the United Nations Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards.

A Bright and Productive Future

Held in Kuwait, Iraq reconstruction conference which wason 12 -14 February 2018. To support to the country following Daesh’s territorial defeat in 2017. The conference, which took drew participants from 76 countries and regional and international organizations, 51 development funds and financial institutions, and 107 local, regional and international nongovernmental organizations, as well as 1,850 private sector representatives .

Investment Opportunities Symposium was held in April 2018. The Symposium demonstrated huge local and international investment appetite throughout all of Iraq’s different provinces and promoted new economic models for Iraq such as Public-Private-Partnerships. PPPs should create excellent opportunities for the country, combining support from public authorities, businesses and civil society. Nine MoUs were successfully agreed, including:

  • Central Markets Rehabilitation – Al Mustansiriyayah, Al Adl, Al Amal, Al Salihiyya, and Al Shaab. Total project cost: $250m, awarded to Daeco of the UK.
  • Al Muftiyya Project in Basra – Residential, Commercial and Leisure Development. Total project cost $234m, awarded to Daeco of the UK.
  • Soda Complex and Table Salt Production Plant in Al Muthanna. Total project cost: $80m, awarded to Al Ghaith of the UAE.
  • 3 MoUs with Kuwaiti investment group Jawad Bukhamseen to develop hotels and commercial centers in Al Kadhimiyyah, Kerbalaa, and Samarraa.
  • A 5-star hotel and commercial center in Baghdad.
  • The Satellite E-Government Project.
  • Development of the Baghdad Industrial City.
  • Expansion and development of Al Andalus Specialist Hospital in Baghdad.
  • Establishment of a branch of an international specialized university in Baghdad over 25,000 square meters, awarded to Al Hawadi Group of the UAE.

These exciting new initaitives correspond to Iraq’s 5-year plan for 2018-2022. The five-year plan seeks to restructure the economy, putting good governance and multi sector reform at its heart, focussed on the recovery of provinces most affected by internal displacement and difficult security conditions.

The development of Iraq’s investment environment will also enable the development of various sectors and create more than two million new jobs and more integration with regional economies and the global community, paving the way to a bright future.

(Source: Sadek Ali)

Mosul’s Great Mosque to be Restored to Former Glory

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.

When the Al-Nouri Mosque and the adjacent al-Hadba minaret in Mosul were bombed by the Islamic State (IS) on June 21, 2017, many thought that the landmark mosque and its “hunchback” minaret most famous for its leaning structure were gone for good.

But today, there is some hope of restoring both structures. The reconstruction of the mosque and the minaret will start in June, said Nofal Sultan al-Akoub, the governor of Iraq’s northern province of Ninevah, on May 6.

The announcement follows a protocol signed April 23 between Iraq and the United Arab Emirates, where the latter would commit $50.4 million over five years for the reconstruction of the mosque that dates from the 12th century. UNESCO is also a signatory to the reconstruction agreement.

The mosque is an important symbol for Mosul, and it was used in 2014 as the venue where Islamic State (IS) leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and militants proclaimed a caliphate. Three years later, IS fighters blew it to pieces weeks before their defeat.

The minaret, which was one of the few remaining parts of the original construction, is less known to the international world. It had a design often attributed to Iranian architectural influence, with a white plastered top. It had a significant lean since the 14th century, and its likeness can be found on 10,000-dinar bills.

The main questions on the renovation are whether the amount allocated, which is one of the largest sums committed for a restoration project in Iraq, will be enough and whether the reconstruction will be successful.

Mohammed Nouri al-Abed Rabbo, a parliament member from Ninevah, told Al-Monitor that the next phase would be to take bids for the reconstruction after the government agencies finalized the contract and the blueprints for the work required.

Abed Rabbo added that the reconstruction process “needs more funding than what has been allocated by the UAE.” Pointing out that the monument was essentially razed to the ground, he said that great architectural skills would be required for the reconstruction, and UNESCO — the cultural arm of the UN — would need to be involved.

“There have been efforts since the liberation of Mosul to clean the mosque of explosive devices, remove rubble, document the destruction and collect the damaged authentic relics. The area was cordoned off to prevent the loss of the remaining relics from the minaret and the mosque,” Abed Rabbo added.

Mosul Mayor Zuhair Muhssein al-Araji told Al-Monitor via phone that the reconstruction plan was developed following discussions and meetings with UNESCO. These meetings have taken up costs and conducted feasibility studies. He said he expected the construction to take at least four years.

“The implementation process is likely to take a long time, as it is a large area. Given its great historical importance, the work needs to be meticulous. We need to study the available historical data so it can be restored to its original architecture,” Araji added.

According to professor of modern history at Mosul University Ibrahim al-Allaf, Nur al-Din al-Zanki — who ruled Mosul — “ordered the building of the mosque [and its minaret] in A.D. 1172.”

Allaf said the mosque had been damaged many times in its history. “The Iraqi Department of Antiquities dismantled and rebuilt the mosque in 1942 as part of a renovation campaign,” Allaf told Al-Monitor. “Al-Hadba minaret is the only remaining feature of the original building of the mosque. Due to its historical value, the minaret has been printed on Iraqi banknotes.”

Leafing through the documents he held on the minaret, Allaf said of its structure: “The minaret was 55 meters high [although there are different accounts of its height], while the mosque area is about 6,000 square meters. The minaret’s base is large, and it features Islamic decorations on its four facades. The building of the entire mosque cost at the time 60,000 dinars of gold.”

Louise Haxthausen, the UNESCO director for Iraq, said at the press conference April 23 that the “reconstruction of the minaret is an ambitious project that carries major symbolism for the liberation of Mosul.”

The head of Iraq’s Parliamentary Committee on Media and Culture, Maysoon al-Damluji, who is from Mosul, told Al-Monitor that the National Authority for Antiquities and Heritage will be involved in the restoration, and that she hoped archaeologists and architects from Mosul would be involved.

“The reconstruction project will not only address the physical and structural aspects of the building, but also highlight the cultural and artistic heritage such as the decorations, ornaments, inscriptions and writings,” Damluji said. She urged the authorities to be careful “not to damage the remaining relics during the removal of rubble and the works on the site.”

Meanwhile, Ahmed Kassem al-Juma, a retired professor from the University of Mosul and a UNESCO Islamic monuments and archaeology expert based in Mosul, told Al-Monitor, “No matter how meticulous and careful the work to restore the relics is, the restored building will not bear the same value of the original that was blown up by IS.”

“The minaret and the mosque were characterized by fine technical details such as the marble pillars of the praying room, the cubic crowns, the strip engraved with words from the Quranic verses, as well as the mosque’s mihrab ornamented with arabesque decorations carved on marble,” Juma added.

He said, “The summer prayer mihrab (the outdoor niche in the wall where the imam stands to conduct prayers) is made of marble. It is currently at the National Museum in Baghdad.”

Juma accompanied the UNESCO delegation that toured the site before the launch of the project. “I keep all the documents, blueprints and drawings of the mosque with all its parts, the architectural details, measurements and maps of the original locations,” he said.

“I worked for a full year in a field survey of the minaret and the mosque before IS entered Mosul in 2014. I documented the details of the mosque and the ceramic construction units with more than 500 sketches and technical drawings,” Juma said, adding, “The mosque has great moral, social and religious significance, as it has been in the past … the place to hold meetings and gatherings for religious and official public events.”

(Picture Credit: Tasnim, under Creative Commons licence)

Ducorr completes Corrosion Protection work at Majnoon

By John Lee.

Sharjah-based Ducorr has reportedly completed the design and deployment of a cathodic protection system for Shell’s Majnoon oil field.

Construction Week Online quotes company sources as saying that the flowlines were buried in very corrosive soil, hence the need for protection.

(Source: Construction Week Online)

Iraq Awards New Oilfield Licences: FULL LIST

By John Lee.

Iraq’s Ministy of Oil has awarded all four development projects, and two of the seven exploration blocks, that it offered in its fifth auction of oil licences.

Only nine of the 26 companies originally pre-qualified took part in the auction, with majors such as Lukoil (Russia), ExxonMobil (US) and Total (France) not bidding.

Development blocks:

  • Gilabat-Qumar, in Diyala: Crescent Petroleum (UAE)
  • Khashim Ahmer-Injana, in Diyala: Crescent Petroleum (UAE)
  • Huwaiza, in Missan (Maysan): Geo Jade Petroleum (China)
  • Khudher Al-Mai [Khider al-Mai], in Basra and Muthana: Crescent Petroleum (UAE)

Exploration blocks:

  • Naft Khana, in Diyala: Geo-Jade Petroleum (China)
  • Sindibad [Sindbad] field in Basra: United Energy Group (Hong Kong)
  • Zurbatiya [Zurbatia], in Wasit and Diyala: not awarded
  • Shihabi in Missan and Wasit: not awarded
  • Fao, in Basra: not awarded
  • Jebel Sanam [Jabal Sanam], in Basra: not awarded
  • Offshore Gulf block: not awarded

Abdul Mahdi al-Ameedi, director general of the Petroleum Contracts and Licensing Directorate (PCLD), told Reuters that the failure of five blocks to attract bids was due to a combination of factors, including the fact that some of them cover former battlefields, some are hard to access, and the one offshore plot needs more data.

He said another round could be held for those five blocks.

More details here from Iraq Oil Report (subscription required)

(Sources: Iraq Oil Report, Reuters, Associated Press, AFP)

UAE Funds $50m Rebuild of Mosul Minaret

By John Lee.

UAE’s Minister of Culture has reportedly signed an agreement funding the rebuilding of Mosul’s famed al-Hadba minaret, which was destroyed by the Islamic State group (IS, ISIS, ISIL, Daesh) in the last weeks of the war.

According to a report from Rudaw, Minister Noura al-Kaabi signed the agreement with Iraq’s Minister of Culture Firiyad Rawanduzi for the $50.4 million project in coordination with the UN’s heritage agency.

This is a historic partnership, the largest and unprecedented cooperation to rebuild cultural heritage in Iraq ever,” UNESCO Director General Audrey Azoulay stated, welcoming the agreement.

More here.

(Source: Rudaw)

(Picture credit: Faisal Jeber)

64,000 New Homes Planned for Al-Rashid City

By John Lee.

Zawya reports that the Iraqi cabinet has asked the National Investment Commission (NIC) to go ahead with the huge Al-Rashid City project planned for Baghdad.

The $10-billion development is to be carried out by Dubai’s Emaar Properties and Abu Dhabi’s Eagle Hills, and will include the building of “up to” (sic) 64,000 new homes, has previously been estimated by Iraqi officials to have an investment value of about $10 billion.

Emaar Properties told Thomson Reuters that it will make appropriate disclosures when the agreements are finalised.

(Source: Zawya)

(Picture: Construction at Bismaya New City)

Mueller witness “Helped Broker” $4.2bn Iraq-Russia Arms Deal

By Laura Rozen for Al-Monitor. Any opinions expressed are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.

The dealmaker: Mueller witness helped broker $4.2 billion Iraq-Russia arms deal

A Lebanese-American businessman reported to be cooperating with Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia probe helped broker a controversial 2012 Iraq-Russia arms deal valued at $4.2 billion, Iraqi sources tell Al-Monitor.

The Russia arms deal

George Nader, 58, traveled to Moscow in 2012, telling Russian interlocutors that he represented Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki and the deal should be negotiated through him, according to two Iraqi sources. Nader’s role in the deal was controversial to Iraqi officials because Iraq’s minister of defense was in Russia to conduct the negotiations, and they were unaware that Maliki was working with Nader to bypass official channels.

One of the Iraqi sources, a former Iraqi official who spoke to Al-Monitor on condition that he not be named, personally witnessed Nader’s interactions with Maliki in their Moscow hotel when he accompanied Maliki to Moscow in October 2012 to sign the arms deal with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Nader’s career as a deal broker in Iraq ran from the mid-2000s until Maliki left office in 2014, the Iraqi sources said. Nader then became an adviser to the powerful Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan. It is in that capacity that Nader’s meetings with members of the incoming Donald Trump administration in 2016-2017 — including Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner, former national security adviser Michael Flynn and former chief strategist Steve Bannon — brought Nader to Mueller’s attention.

The New York Times reported Tuesday that Nader was arrested and questioned by the FBI when he landed at Washington Dulles International Airport on Jan. 17 en route to celebrate Trump’s first year in office at Mar-a-Lago in Florida. He was questioned by Mueller’s grand jury March 2 and is reported to now be cooperating with Mueller’s probe.

One line of inquiry Mueller is reported to be questioning Nader about is whether the United Arab Emirates (UAE) might have funneled money to members of the incoming Trump administration in an effort to curry influence with them, including in their dispute with Qatar.

From journalist to deal-maker

Nader’s recent career as a Middle East deal broker is both an outgrowth and departure from his past. As an editor of Middle East Insight magazine in Washington in the 1980s and 1990s, Nader interviewed President Bill Clinton and Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini.

During this time, Nader also served as a frequent go-between in informal Syrian-Israeli talks encouraged by the Clinton administration before abruptly disappearing from the Washington scene around 2000.

“He was a reliable go-between, a facilitator,” Martin Indyk, who knew Nader when Indyk served as Clinton’s assistant secretary of state for Near East affairs and ambassador to Israel in the 1990s, told Al-Monitor. “He was not a con man.”

Nader was connected to the Hafez al-Assad regime through then-Syrian Foreign Minister Farouk al-Sharaa and then-Syrian Ambassador to the US and current Foreign Minister Walid Moallem, Indyk said. “He was going to Israel from time to time. He set up an interview of [Syrian Foreign Minister al-Sharaa] with Israeli journalist Ehud Yaari as a confidence-building measure. George is the one that made that happen. … Then he hooked up with [Ron] Lauder. He traveled with Lauder 16 times to Damascus in 1998” in efforts to advance an Israeli-Syrian peace agreement.

“And then when the Clinton administration was gone, George was gone,” Indyk, now executive vice president of the Brookings Institution, said.

“Last time I heard from [Nader] was after the US invasion of Iraq,” journalist Hisham Melham told Al-Monitor. “He called me from Kurdistan. But why would MBZ [the crown prince] need him when he has [UAE Ambassador] Yousef Al Otaiba?”

From dabbling in Syria-Israel peace talks to Iraq postwar dealmaker

Nader appeared in Iraq in the mid-2000s, looking to translate his Rolodex of connections from his Middle East Insight days into work advising various Iraqi political clients, including some of Iraq’s new Shiite political leaders, as well as Kurdish officials.

According to Iraqi sources, Nader helped arrange meetings for the 2005 visit to Washington of leading members of an Iraqi Shiite political party with close ties to Iran, the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq. In 2010, Nader similarly arranged meetings for then-Iraqi Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani with high-level UAE officials, including the crown prince, a second Iraqi source now living in exile told Al-Monitor. But Nader failed to win over the KRG leader, the second Iraqi source said.

“Nader got Nechirvan Barzani meetings with MBZ and [Lebanese Prime Minister] Saad Hariri,” the second Iraqi source said, adding that he advised Iraqi Kurdish interlocutors at the time to be wary of Nader.

Nader had a “knack for claiming that he had unique access to ‘mysterious’ persons,” the second Iraqi source said. “This way he would be able to latch on from one new confidant to another.”

By 2012, Nader had forged close ties with the Iraqi prime minister and Maliki’s son and deputy chief of staff, Ahmed Maliki, Iraqi sources said. Nader had worked with the younger Maliki on power generation projects, the former Iraqi official said. The relationship that Nader forged with Maliki’s son apparently brought Nader into the father’s inner circle when the huge Russian arms deal was being negotiated.

In August 2012, Iraq’s Minister of Defense Saadoun al-Dulaimi spent 24 days in Moscow to finalize negotiations for the $4.2 billion Russian arms deal. But during the negotiations, the former Iraqi official told Al-Monitor that he received a message from former Russian Energy Minister Yuri Shafranik warning him that there were other people in Moscow claiming that they, and not the defense minister, were representing Maliki, and that the deal should go through them.

Eventually, on Oct. 3, 2012, Shafranik went to Baghdad to try to clarify the situation with Maliki, the former Iraqi official said. Shafranik even offered Maliki a direct communication line with Russian President Vladimir Putin to avoid confusion and leaks.

“The third of October, Yuri [Shafranik] came to Baghdad, met the prime minister and told him clearly that ‘Mr. Putin is suggesting direct relations between you and him to avoid any leakage and … cut any unhealthy things,’” the former Iraqi official said. “The prime minister welcomed that.”

Maliki assured the officials that he welcomed the suggestion to streamline their contacts and signaled that the confusion over who represented Baghdad in the arms deal would be resolved.

So the former Iraqi official was astonished when he accompanied Maliki to Moscow in October 2012 to sign the Russian arms deal to see Nader enter their hotel and take the elevator to Maliki’s suite.

“We were in a Radisson hotel in Moscow,” the former Iraqi official said. “And all of a sudden, George Nader came, walking very fast, entered the elevator, went up and, I saw from the screen over the elevator, went to the level where the prime minister was staying.

“When the minister of defense came down to the ground floor, I asked, did you notice George Nader? And he said yes; he saw him entering the prime minister’s suite,” the former Iraqi official said. “By that time I realized the issue is in-house. The corrupted party, which went to Moscow to represent Maliki, they are not … strange people. They are in the circle with Maliki.”

The former Iraqi official continued, “Also, while we were there we discovered new facts. I myself did not know that those people who traveled to Moscow at the end of August, that they are connected to Maliki and his son. But George Nader I knew very well. I was shocked. Then it immediately came to me — Nader’s relations with the son of Maliki.”

Over the course of the trip to Moscow, “we came to know that one of the three people who had been in Moscow presenting themselves as [Maliki’s] representative was George Nader,” the former Iraqi official said.

A call Wednesday by Al-Monitor to an attorney who represented Nader in an earlier case was not returned. A spokesman for the Iraqi Embassy said it did not have information on the matter.

The Iraqi-Russian arms deal was controversial in Iraq and long suspected to have involved corruption. In November 2012, just a month after it was signed, Iraq’s then-acting Defense Minister Dulaimi announced that the deal was canceled, “citing possible corruption in the contract,” Reuters reported.

But Maliki’s then-media adviser Ali al-Moussawi was cited by Reuters as saying that the deals would be renegotiated and any suspension of the contract was “a precautionary measure because of suspected corruption.”

From Iraq to the UAE

After the end of Maliki’s run as Iraq’s prime minister in 2014, Nader made his way to become an adviser to the Abu Dhabi crown prince. Until Trump’s election, however, he had maintained such a low profile that even several Washington consultants who have advised the Emirates said they were entirely unaware of his role.

It may now be left to Mueller to help deepen understanding of Nader’s mysterious activities and what role they may have played in influencing the Trump administration’s policies toward the Middle East.

Kuwait Energy signs Block 9 Farm-out Agreement

Kuwait Energy Signs Block 9, Iraq Farm-out Agreement with Dragon Oil

Kuwait Energy (KEC) has announced the signing of the Block 9, Iraq Farm-out Agreement with Dragon Oil (a wholly-owned subsidiary of Emirates National Oil Company Ltd, the national oil company of Dubai).

As per the Farm-out Agreement, Kuwait Energy will assign a 15% participating interest in the Block 9, Iraq service contract comprised of 8.57% participating interest in Block 9, Iraq to Dragon Oil in consideration for US$100 million in cash; and 6.43% participating interest in Block 9, Iraq to Dragon Oil in settlement of a dispute with Dragon Oil in relation to a non-controlling interest in Block 9, Iraq.

The agreement was signed on 11 February 2018 by Ali Rashid al Jarwan, Dragon Oil Chief Executive Officer (CEO); and Abby Badwi, the CEO of Kuwait Energy.

Abby Badawi (pictured), Chief Executive Officer of Kuwait Energy, said:

This is a great moment for Kuwait Energy and Dragon Oil. The extension of our Block 9 partnership with Dragon Oil has meant that both Companies can work as equal equity partners on the concession allowing us to best utilise our joint technical expertise in delivering the submission of the Block 9 full field development plan to the Iraqi government.

“The reduction in future Block 9 capital expenditure exposure coupled with the material cash injection strengthens Kuwait Energy liquidity position going forward.

The assignment of the 15% participating interest in Block 9, Iraq from Kuwait Energy to Dragon Oil remains subject to Iraqi government and partner approval. Post granting of these approvals, Kuwait Energy will remain the operator with a reduction in participating interest from 60% to 45%,

Dragon Oil participating interest will increase from 30% to 45% with the remaining 10% participating interest being held by Egyptian General Petroleum Company.

(Source: Kuwait Energy)

Crescent Petroleum to Increase Investment in Iraqi Gas

By John Lee.

UAE-based Crescent Petroleum is reportedly planning a significant increase in its production of natural gas at its Pearl Petroleum operations in Iraq.

President Badr Jafar (pictured) is quoted as saying that there will be an investment of $1 billion to boost production to 500 million cubic feet of gas per day by 2020, up from about 330 million cubic feet  and about 20,000 barrels per day of condensates at present.

According to Reuters, Pearl is owned 35 percent by Crescent Petroleum, 35 percent by Crescent’s affiliate Dana Gas, 10 percent by Austria’s OMV, 10 percent by Germany’s RWE, and 10 percent by Hungary’s MOL.

(Sources: Gulf News, Reuters)