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ExxonMobil transfers Iraqi operations to PetroChina

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Picture of Anamika Talwaria

Anamika Talwaria

Editor & Head of Content for Tank Storage Magazine & StocExpo and Chair of Women in Tanks.

US energy giant ExxonMobil has formally exited the West Qurna 1 oilfield in southern Iraq and handed over its operations to PetroChina as lead contractor, a deputy oil minister told Reuters on Monday. It marks the oil giant’s exit from the Iraq market.

West Qurna 1 currently produces around 550,000 barrels per day (bpd). It is one of the world’s largest oilfields with recoverable reserves estimated at more than 20 billion barrels.

Senior Iraqi oil officials met with executives from ExxonMobil, PetroChina and Basra Oil Co  at the West Qurna 1 field near Basra to mark Exxon’s complete exit and the handover of its operations to PetroChina.

‘We are meeting today to bid farewell to ExxonMobil, and at the same time we congratulate PetroChina for becoming the lead contractor,’ Basim Mohammed, deputy oil minister for upstream affairs, told Reuters on site.

PetroChina holds the largest stake in the field after the departure of Exxon.

Last year, Iraq signed a sale agreement to acquire 22.7% of ExxonMobil’s stake in West Qurna 1 by Iraq’s state-run Basra Oil Co.(BOC), while Indonesia’s Pertamina bought the remaining 10% of Exxon’s stake, increasing its share to 20%.

Iraq and PetroChina plan to boost production to 600,000 bpd at the end of 2024, the head of BOC said.

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