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CNPC starts second phase of Halfaya oil project in Iraq

BY WAYNE MA

BEIJING -- China' s largest oil company has started the next phase of construction at its landmark oil project in Iraq as it attempts to improve energy security and make up for a decline in oil exports from Iran.

CNPC' s PetroChina Co. has begun construction of the second phase of its Halfaya oil field project. Halfaya is the CNPC' s largest overseas investment project as an operator.

The second phase of the project includes a crude-oil pipeline running from southern Missan province to the port of Faw, the drilling of 60 additional wells and a processing center capable of handling 100,000 bopd. The second phase would double output to 200,000 bopd and is expected to be completed in mid-2014, CNPC said.

Last year, Iraq' s oil minister, Abdul Kareem Luaiby, said a third phase would have the field pump a total of 400,000 bopd, with a target to hit production of 600,000 bopd by the end of 2016.

In late 2009, a PetroChina-led group won the right to develop the oil field some 35 km south of the city of Amarah in southern Iraq. PetroChina holds 37.5% of the 20-year concession. Total and Malaysia' s Petroliam Nasional Bhd. each hold 18.75% and Iraq' s state-owned Missan Oil Co. holds 25%.

Iraq, a member of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, holds the world' s third-largest oil reserves and has become the second-largest oil exporter in OPEC after Iran, whose output is retreating following sanctions imposed by the European Union and the U.S. against Iran' s oil exports.

The Halfaya field, which has estimated reserves of 4.09 Bbbl. CNPC is developing two more Iraqi fields. Along with BP, CNPC is developing Iraq' s largest oil field, Rumaila, in southern Basra province, where production is already hitting 1.35 MMbopd.

Dow Jones Newswires

08/06/2013

 

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