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Iraq postpones gas field agreement again

27 february 2011, 01:21
Tengrinews.kz stock photo
Tengrinews.kz stock photo
Iraq once again postponed the initialling of a gas field development contract with firms from Kazakhstan and South Korea, over a dispute with local authorities, its oil minister was cited by Agence France-Presse as saying on Thursday.

It was the second such postponement. Iraq initialled draft agreements in November to develop two other gas fields that were auctioned to foreign companies a month earlier, an agreement on Akkaz was deferred.

Abdelkarim al-Luaybi said officials in western Anbar province, where the Akkaz gas field is located, asked for South Korea's Korean Gas Corporation and Kazakhstan's KazMunaiGaz to be contractually obliged to build housing and improve public services in the mostly Sunni province.

"We have decided to postpone until the provincial council in Anbar are happy with the contract," Luaybi told a news conference in Baghdad.

Akkaz is Iraq's biggest gas field with proven reserves of 158 billion cubic meters and was auctioned off in October.
Iraq's current gas production -- all of it associated gas from oil wells -- is 1.5 million cubic meters a day, but half is burned off in flares from oil wells, according to Baghdad-based analyst Ruba Husari.

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