BOC Boss to Head Iraqi Oil Ministry

By John Lee.

Iraq's parliament has approved the appointment of the former head of the Basra Oil Company (BOC) as Minister for Oil.

Variously named as Ihsan Ismaeel, Ihsan Abdul Jabbar Ismail, and Ihsan Ismaael, he was one of seven cabinet ministers approved on Saturday, completing Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi's 22-member government.

The other posts filled were foreign affairs, trade, culture, agriculture, justice and migration.

According to Al Jazeera, Fuad Hussein, who served as finance minister in the previous government, is the only member of the old government to join the new team, returning as Minister of Foreign Affairs. The veteran Kurdish politician is reported to be close to Kurdish leader Masoud Barzani.

(Sources: AFP, Iraq Oil Report, Reuters, Al Jazeera)

Petrofac secures Contract Extension with Basra Oil Company

Petrofac's Engineering & Production Services division (EPS) has secured a further six-month contract extension with Basra Oil Company (BOC) for its long-standing Iraq Crude Oil Export Expansion Project (ICOEEP).

According to a statement from Petrofac, the confirmation of the contract extension is recognition of Petrofac's successful seven-and-a-half-year track record of safe and efficient delivery and ability to sustain and improve export levels as incumbent operations and maintenance service provider.

The facility, which is one of the largest export terminals in the Gulf and handles around 50% of Iraq's crude oil exports, is located 60 km offshore the Al Fao Peninsula in Southern Iraq. It comprises a central metering and manifold platform and four Single Point Moorings (SPMs) which facilitate oil export onto awaiting crude carrier tankers. In addition, Petrofac is responsible for almost 300 km of subsea pipelines, 1800 metres of subsea and floating hose infrastructure and a marine spread comprising 14 vessels.

Mani Rajapathy, Managing Director, EPS East, said:

"We are delighted to be awarded this further contract extension in Iraq by our longstanding client BOC. During this current challenging period for operations we have continued to work well together, improving the daily export beyond two million barrels. We thank BOC for their consistent support and look forward to maintaining the best-in-class operation of this important national asset."

Mr Ihsan Ismaael, Director General of BOC commented:

"Petrofac continues to be a true partner to BOC, ensuring uninterrupted and record exports. We appreciate their commitment, particularly during this recent period, and congratulate them for hitting new export highs."

Petrofac has been present in Iraq since 2010. Today, Petrofac employs around 400 people in country and is currently working on a number of projects for a variety of NOC and IOC clients.

(Source: Petrofac)

Iraq to Cut Production at Nahr Bin Umar

By John Lee.

The Basra Oil Company (BOC) will reportedly reduce production at the Nahr Bin Umar oilfield due to pollution and gas emissions.

Director General Ihsan Abduljabbar [Ihsan Abdul Jabbar Ismail] is quoted as saying that the field is considered one of Iraq’s most controversial because of pollution and gas emissions.

(Source: Reuters)

New Drilling Contracts Awarded at Majnoon

By John Lee.

Basra Oil Company (BOC) has signed two contracts for new drilling at the giant Majnoon oil field.

China’s Hilong Oil Service & Engineering Company is to drill 80 oil wells at a cost of $54 million, while the Iraqi Drilling Company (IDC) will drill 43 oil wells at a cost of $255 million.

Oil Minister Thamir al-Ghadhban said the contracts are part of BOC’s plan to increase the production at Majnoon to 400,000 barrels per day by 2022.

(Source: Iraqi Ministry of Oil)

Exxon Ex-Pats “to return to West Qurna 1”

By John Lee.

According to a report from Reuters, employees from Exxon Mobil will start returning to work at the West Qurna 1 oilfield on Sunday.

Sources told the news agency that the company had received assurances from the Iraqi Ministry of Oil and the Basra Oil Company (BOC) that its staff would receive extra security.

Earlier in the month, the company evacuated about 30 foreign engineers from Basra as a “temporary precautionary measure”.

(Source: Reuters)

Hyundai wins $2.4bn Desalination Contract

By John Lee.

Hyundai Engineering & Construction has reportedly won a $2.45-billion deal to build a seawater processing facility in Iraq.

South Korean media report that the company signed a letter of intent with Basra Oil Company (BOC) on Wednesday for the 49-month project, which will be capable of supplying 5 million barrels of fresh water per day.

This will help to increase output at Iraq’s oil fields.

(Sources: Yonhap, Korea Herald)

Iraq to Increase Production at West Qurna 1

By John Lee.

Oil production is to increase at the West Qurna 1 oilfield, according to Reuters.

The news agency quoted Basra Oil Company (BOC) chief Ihsan Abdul Jabbar as saying on Wednesday that output will rise from 440,000 barrels of crude oil per day (bpd) to 490,000 bpd in the “next few days”.

The field is being developed by ExxonMobil (25%), PetroChina (25%), Itochu (15%), Pertamina (10%), Iraq’s state-owned Oil Exploration Company (25%)

(Source: Reuters)

New Contract for Drilling 40 Wells at Majnoon

By John Lee.

Iraq’s Basra Oil Company (BOC) has agreed a deal with the state-owned Iraqi Drilling Company (IDC) to drill 40 new oil wells in the giant Majnoon oilfield.

In a statement on Thursday, the Ministry of Oil said the aim is to increase production at the field to 450,000 barrels per day (bpd) by 2021.

Reuters estimates current production at around 240,000 bpd.

(Sources: Ministry of Oil, Reuters)

Schlumberger to Drill 40 Wells at Majnoon

By John Lee.

US-based Schlumberger has won a deal with Iraq’s Basra Oil Company (BOC) to drill 40 new wells at Majnoon oilfield.

In a statement on Wednesday, the Ministry of Oil also announced that the BOC had entered into a 19-month contract with the Iraqi Oil Exploration Company to carry out 2D and 3D seismic surveys at the field.

(Source: Ministry of Oil)