As part of the Iraqi government strategy for the sustainable development of the oil and gas sector, Iraq signed a contract with China’s state-run Zhenhua Oil to develop the southern portion of the East Baghdad oilfield, the oil ministry said on Wednesday.
Iraq is seeking to increase production from East Baghdad oilfield to 40,000 barrels per day within five years.
Iraqi oil officials estimate that the East Baghdad field has around 8 billion barrels of crude reserves, and the potential to produce 120,000 barrels of oil per day.
The contract also requires Zhenhua Oil to build a residential complex and recruits qualified Iraqi nationals to work on the project.
Under the deal, BP will boost output capacity from six fields in the Kirkuk region to a total of more than 1 million barrels per day (bpd), three times the current capacity in the region.
Kirkuk is one of the biggest and oldest oilfields in the Middle East, estimated to contain about 9 billion barrels of recoverable oil.