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France’s oil and gas major Total is interested in bidding for the construction of a 150,000-bpd oil refinery in Nassiriya in Iraq, Reuters reported on Tuesday, citing two sources familiar with the developments.
Bids for the refinery construction are still open, and international oil companies would bid as refiners only, Ali Warid Hammood, director general at Iraq’s Dhi Qar Oil Co, told Reuters on the sidelines of the Iraq Petroleum Conference in Berlin.
In October last year, Iraq’s oil ministry said that PetroChina was interested in building the Nassiriya refinery. The construction of the refinery is part of a larger plan to develop the Nassiriya oil field and related infrastructure.
In the past, Russia’s Lukoil has also been mentioned as a possible contender for the Nassiriya refinery and oil field in a project that has been long delayed by Iraq.
Currently, Dhi Qar Oil has taken over the development of Nassiriya oil field, Hammood told Reuters today. The field’s current production is between 80,000 bpd and 100,000 bpd, with plans to double that to 200,000 bpd within the next three years.
In Iraq, France’s Total has a 22.5-percent interest in the consortium that operates the Halfaya oil field in the Missan province in southern Iraq. It also markets lubricants in the country through local retailers.
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Total is also said to be part of a consortium—together with Petrochina and Chevron—that could take over the operation of the Majnoon oil field from Shell, after the Anglo-Dutch oil major said it was exiting the field.
After it declared that the war with ISIS was over at the end of last year, Iraq is now seeking foreign investments in major projects that would help it to revive its economy, which has also been hurt by low oil prices. Iraq is looking to attract US$100 billion worth of foreign investment that would help it to rebuild its oil refining and petrochemicals sectors and reconstruct crucial infrastructure after it repelled the Islamic State out of its territory following a three-year war against the militants.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
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Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews.