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Iraq approves first major post-war foreign oil deal.

BP was thrown out of Iraq in 1972 when Saddam Hussein nationalized Iraq’s oil industry. The BBC reported today that BP will hold a 38% stake in a 20 year contract to produce from Southern Iraqi oilfields, sharing 37% with Chinese CNPC and 25% with Iraq’s State Oil Marketing Organization. The Rumaila field represents 43bbl of Iraq’s 115bbl of proved reserves.

Thirty two companies bid for contracts in a televised June action, but most withdrew those bids amidst security concerns and the amount that Iraq’s oil ministry was willing to pay per barrel of production. BP and CNPC had asked for a maximum of $4 per barrel over current levels of production, but settled on $2.

CNN Money reported Friday that a Royal Dutch Shell-led consortium is renegotiating with Iraq in the Kirkuk oil field. Shell had asked for $7.89 per barrel of production over a set minimum level, but was offered $2 by the oil ministry.


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