According AFP, Iraq has asked British BP to help bolster production at oilfields recaptured from the Kurds in northern Kirkuk province, Oil Minister Jabbar Al-Luaybi said on February 11, 2018.
Luaybi told AFP he wanted to discuss a request for BP to draft a study on increasing output when the company’s boss visits Kirkuk in the coming days. «I suggested they study my proposal and I am waiting for their reply,» Luaybi said.
In 2014, the oil ministry and the british company signed a consultancy deal under which the energy titan would study reserves in the Baba Gurgur and Havana fields and ways of developing them.
But Baghdad lost the Kirkuk fields to Kurdish forces that year during a sweeping offensive by Daesh, and the deal was never implemented. Iraq had signed a new memorandum with BP in January 2018 after the federal government seized back control of the area following a September Kurdish independence referendum bitterly opposed by Baghdad.
Iraq is the 2nd largest producer in the OPEC cartel after Saudi Arabia. It reported its oil exports at 109.6 million barrels in December last year, the same month that the government announced victory over Daesh.
Iraq in December 2017 earned around $6.5 billion (5.3 billion euros) from crude sales, at $59.3 per barrel.