Iraq Oil update

The March 11, 2011 US State department Iraq weekly status report

The Iraqi oil ministry has a target of 3.26 million barrels per day by Dec 31, 2011. Iraq’s exports surged to a postwar record of 2.16 million b/d in January and had 2.7 to 2.8 million barrel per day of production in January and February.

Wall Street Journal – International oil firms that won mega-projects in southern Iraq expect to boost the country’s crude oil output capacity by 600,000 barrels a day by the end of the year.

The southern Iraq supergiant oil fields such as Rumaila, Zubair and West Qurna 1 could be producing 2.5 million barrels per day by the end of the year.

Rumaila reached 1.27 million bpd on Dec. 26, 2010. In March, the Iraqi oil ministry then said the field was producing almost 20% more oil than before, or 1.275 million barrels a day.

Output at Iraq’s Zubair oilfield had reached 265,000 bpd in January.

West Qurna had 230,000 to 240,000 bpd in January, 2011. ExxonMobil and partner Royal Dutch Shell PLC (RDSA) said in March, 2011 that they have increased output from West Qurna 1 to 285,000 barrels a day from 244,000 barrels a day. Under an agreement between Iraq and the companies, production from the West Qurna I field should reach 2.825 million barrels a day after 6 to 7 years.

Iraq’s South oil company (SOC) is developing four oil fields in the south–Tuba, Nassiriyah, Luhais and Nahr Ben Umar. The first three will be producing some 150,000 barrels a day by the end of this year, he said.

Tuba will start producing 50,000 barrels a day as of next month from 9,000 barrels a day at present, he said.

SOC is also aiming to produce 50,000 barrels a day from each at the Nassiriyah and Luhais oil fields by the end of this year. Nahr Ben Umar is expected to start first production next year, Jaafar said.

Earlier in March, 2011, the Iraqi oil ministry unveiled a four-year ambitious plan to boost output to 6.5 million barrels a day by the end of 2014, from 2.6 million barrels a day now.

In order to achieve the plan, the ministry’s oil companies, including SOC, have begun to link oil fields with the country’s export system.

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