ExxonMobil cut from Iraq bidding round
US supermajor ExxonMobil has been excluded from the final list of 47 pre-qualified bidders for Iraq’s upcoming fourth exploration round, while Indonesia's Pertamina and a Syrian oil company have been added.
Iraq's oil minister Abdul Kareem Luaibi had said a week ago that Baghdad was still studying whether to allow ExxonMobil to take part due to a dispute over contracts it signed with Iraqi Kurdistan.
Iraq is offering 12 large exploration blocks of an average size of 6,500 sq km in the latest round, with seven thought to be gas blocks and five crude.
Since launching the first licensing round in 2008, Iraq has awarded 14 contracts to date in three rounds. Japan and Russia entered the largest number of bids with nine and five respectively in a list that also includes supermajors BP, Chevron, Shell and Total.