Shell to resume operations at giant Iraq oilfield
Baghdad, March 16, 2013
Royal Dutch Shell will resume operations at Iraq's Majnoon oilfield on May 1, with initial production of 100,000 barrels per day (bpd), Oil Minister Abdul Kareem Luaibi said on Saturday.
The production re-start at one of Iraq's major fields could help boost the OPEC member's exports towards the 2.9 million bpd average projected in the budget, making up for a cut by the country's autonomous north.
Iraq exported an average 2.538 million bpd in February, Luaibi said, up from 2.359 million the previous month.
"The significant factor which affected exports was the weather... but we hope, these months... we will compensate the lost amounts of the first season," he said.
Majnoon was shut down in June for maintenance and to bring new production facilities online.
"Majnoon is planned to start producing on May 1. The production average will be 100,000 bpd to begin with and speedily rise to 200,000 bpd," Luaibi said.
At their peak, oil exports from Iraq were above 2.6 million bpd, but last December its Kurdistan region stopped shipping crude because of a row with the central government over payments to oil companies operating in the region.
In recent years, the Kurds have signed deals on their own terms with the likes of Exxon Mobil, Chevron Corp and Russia's Gazprom Neft, riling Baghdad, which rejects the contracts as illegal.
Iraq has the world's fourth-largest oil reserves and is targeting exports of 6 million bpd by 2017.-Reuters
More INTERNATIONAL NEWS Stories
- Big bananas: Chiquita, Fyffes merge
- Radar sweeps, dozens of aircraft, 6 navies, but no sign of missing plane
- N Korea tanker loads oil at Libya rebel port
- Gold drops as US growth optimism weighs
- Merkel raps Putin; Russia tightens grip on Crimea
- World 'at sea' over missing Malaysian jetliner
- Passports requiring probe were on Malaysia flight
- 40 killed in Yemen as Houthi fighters near capital
- Vietnam finds object in sea; search on
- $5bn poll spend to boost India economy
- Libya authorises use of force against Korean tanker
- Ukraine PM says he will go to US to discuss crisis
- Syrian journalist killed covering fighting
- Malaysian jet may have turned back before vanishing
- No sign of missing plane; Malaysia probes false passports
- Two Europeans not on board 'missing' Malaysian jet
- China draws red line on North Korea
- Saudi sentences three to death for 2003 bombing
- First bitcoin machine opens in UK
- US sanctions will boomerang, warns Russia
- China plans $50bn bank to fund projects
- Sony to sell Tokyo 'birthplace'
- Obama orders sanctions over Russian moves
- Crimea parliament votes to join Russia
- Arab League to be revamped
- 'Upskirting' is legal: Massachusetts court
- Singapore probes 'unnatural' death of bitcoin trader
- Onus on world powers for Syria war crimes: UN
- US, Russia set for talks on Ukraine crisis
- Brent oil drops below $109