Iraq to Hold Roadshow Aug 25 on 2nd Round Oil, Gas Deals

AMMAN (Dow Jones Newswires), Jul. 27, 2009

Iraq's Oil Ministry will hold a roadshow in Istanbul next month to brief international companies on a list of oil and gas fields to be offered later this year in a second licensing round for long-term development contracts, a statement posted on the ministry's Web site Sunday said.

"The roadshow will be in Istanbul on Aug. 25, 2009 at the Intercontinental Hotel," the ministry said in a statement issued by the Petroleum Contracts and Licensing Directorate, or PCLD.

The PCLD issued a final list of fields in its second post-war licensing round, listing 10 projects - including the prized and largely untapped fields of Majnoon and West Qurna phase II. The new list excluded the southern Siba gas field.

"They were 11 groups of fields, but the oil ministry in a meeting last week decided to exclude Siba gas field," a top ministry official told Dow Jones Newswires by telephone from Baghdad.

"It was dropped because it is near the border with Iran," he said without giving further details.

The PCLD said: "Registration for the roadshow is only for companies that are pre-qualified to participate." The oil ministry pre-qualified some 49 international companies to take part in the first and second bidding rounds. They include the oil majors such as Total, BP, Royal Dutch Shell, Chevron, ExxonMobil, Lukoil, and ConocoPhillips.

"Companies will need to sign in to register for this event," it added.

Unlike in the first round, there will be no soft loans attached to the second-round service contracts, but signature bonuses will be instated in a tender protocol to be issued in few weeks, the official said.

The second bidding round, unlike the first round's producing fields, covers mostly undeveloped fields. Some small oil fields were grouped together.

They included Halfaya in the southern Missan province: Garraf in Thi Qar province; Kifl, Kifl West and Marjan in Najaf and Kerbala provinces; Badra in Wasit; Qaiyarah and Najmah in the northern Nineveh province; and Gumar, Gilabat; Nau Doman, and Khashm Al-Ahmr in the northeastern Diyala province.

Only the northern part of the giant East Baghdad oil field is included in the second bid round, while the southern portion of the field is to be awarded under an exploration, production and construction, or EPC, deal.

The second round also excluded giant fields such as West Qurna phase I, Zubair, Missan, Bai Hassan and Kirkuk which weren't awarded in the first round held in Baghdad June 30.

The only deal awarded in the first licensing auction was the giant Rumaila oil field to an alliance consisting of BP and China National Petroleum Corp.  

Copyright (c) 2009 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

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