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February 03, 2011

Iraq oil production could be 25-35% higher than 2010 in 2011 and the plans for Rumaila, West Qurna and Zubair oilfields

Extended the US State department graph of iraq oil production and exports with the new numbers and forecasts. Reaching 3 million barrels per day (mbpd) would be 25% higher (590,000 bpd increase) than the 2010 production and 3.26 mbpd (850,000 bpd increase) would be 25% higher than 2010.

Iraq's exports surged to a postwar record of 2.16 million b/d in January The semiautonomous Kurdistan region had been due to resume exports on Feb. 1 at a rate of 100,000 b/d, but in the event did not. And when exports do resume, Iraqi oil sources see initial rates closer to 70,000 b/d. Kurdish region's Tawke oilfield is expected to rise to 50,000 barrels per day in the next two to three days.

International oil companies involved in Iraq's oil opening are expected to add a further 300,000 b/d to production this year, hoisting the total to 3 million b/d -- which would allow for exports of about 2.4 million b/d. Most of the incremental oil will come from work by BP and China National Petroleum Corp. at Rumaila, an Eni-led group at Zubair and -- later in the year -- from Exxon Mobil and Royal Dutch Shell at West Qurna-Phase 1.

The Iraqi oil ministry has a target of 3.26 million barrels per day by Dec 31, 2011

The quick gains at Rumaila and Zubair entitle the contractors to claw back their costs and get paid.



From the latest International Energy Agency Oil Market Report, the production for each OPEc country. Adding 820,000 bpd would be like adding the production of another Qatar. Iraq would be just behind Iran in OPEC oil production.

The maximum rate for shipments of Basrah Light will be stuck at 1.8 million b/d until two 900,000 b/d single-point moorings (SPMs) are installed by the end of the year. Iraq's Deputy Prime Minister for Energy, Hussein al-Shahristani, says the limited export potential is the biggest bottleneck in 2011.

If all goes according to plan with the SPMs, export capacity will expand to 4 million b/d. Oil executives in Baghdad have a more conservative outlook -- they expect to see just one SPM up and running by the start of 2012.

The additional output can meet almost a third of the expected incremental demand in 2011, likely to be led by high growth countries such as China and India.

Going forward, Iraq hopes to produce around 12 mbpd in the next six to seven years, which may account for around a quarter of OPEC’s supplies.



Rumaila Oifield to become largest producer in the world after Saudi Ghawar
Production at Iraq's supergiant Rumaila oilfield has exceeded the 10 percent increase required for developers B.P (BP.L) and China's CNPC to start recovering investment costs (in late December, 2010)

A South Oil Company document showed production at the oilfield -- one of the world's largest -- actually reached 1.27 million bpd on Dec. 26, 2010, and an industry source said that level was still being pumped. Rumaila, the workhorse of Iraq's oil industry, has estimated reserves of around 17 billion barrels. Chinese company CNPC [CNPET.UL] is developing Rumaila with BP. They set an eventual plateau production target for the field of 2.85 million bpd. There are currently 243 wells in Rumaila.

BP plans to drill 3,000 new wells here over the next 10 years and build a town from scratch to house 4,000 employees. BP and Iraqi officials hope the Rumaila field soon will become the second most productive in the world – after Saudi Arabia's Ghawar.

ExxonMobil and parters plan for West Qurna oilfield

ExxonMobil (XOM.N) and its partners raised their production plateau target from Iraq's West Qurna oilfield to 2.825 million barrels per day after adding new reserves to the area covered by their original development contract. The target is for 2017. The consortium plans to boost output from the giant field to around 750,000 bpd in three years (by 2014) from between 230,000 to 240,000 bpd now, by drilling new wells, overhauling existing wells and a series of water injection projects. During the early months of 2011, Exxon and its partners plan to start a water injection project to help boost the output rate and help overcome production decline in the field. n addition to a series of small water injection projects, Exxon is leading a multibillion-dollar water injection project that should be completed by the end of 2013. The group aims to reach its initial production rate of a 10 percent increase to about 268,000 bpd in May, 2011. The group's rehabilitation plan for the field includes drilling between 100 and 120 new wells through the end of 2011, which could boost production to about 300,000 bpd next year, he said. The plan also includes drilling around 1,500 new wells to reach the final plateau target. There are 370 existing wells in the field. Existing infrastructure on the field can handle oil production of 550,000 bpd, Swadi said, but the plan for West Qurna includes building two to three crude processing units to meet the anticipated output increase.

Zubair oilfield

Output at Iraq's Zubair oilfield has reached 265,000 bpd compared to baseline production of 184,000 bpd and Italy's Eni (ENI.MI) and its partners can start to recover investment costs

The Eni-led group said it plans to boost production at the field to 1.2 million barrels a day within six years and maintain that level for another seven years.

Eni controls almost 33% of the group managing the project, while Iraq’s Missan Oil Co. owns 25%, Occidental Petroleum Corp. has 23%and Korea Gas Corp. holds almost 19%,

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