Turkish firms find oil at northern Iraqi well
ISTANBULAnglo-Turkish oil and gas company Genel Energy today announced that it had made a significant oil discovery in a Northern Iraqi well, in partnership with another Turkish oil company Petoil and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG).
Genel Energy said the first of five Chia Surkh wells flowed at a rate of up to 11,950 barrels of oil a day and 15 million cubic feet of gas, in a statement.
As the well confirmed the presence of “a significant oil find,” the company had begun drilling a second well, Genel Energy Chief Executive Tony Hayward said.
“We intend to carry out a rapid appraisal and development program and expect to have an early production scheme operating in the first half of 2014,” Hayward said.
The field may hold more than 300 million barrels of oil, Hayward told Bloomberg in a phone interview yesterday.
He said Genel was in talks with as many as four Turkish utilities to sell gas from the company’s Miran field.
First int’l sale
The field is operated, and 60 percent owned, by Genel Energy. The remaining 40 per cent is held equally between Petoil and the Kurdistan Regional Government. Genel Energy is the largest producer in Iraq’s Kurdish region. The company said it wanted to enter the southern Iraqi market but was put on a Baghdad blacklist because the company was already operating in northern Iraq.
The first Kurdish oil sold to international markets last week was also pumped from a Genel-operated field. Around 30,000 tons of Kurdish oil, pumped from the Taq Taq oilfield, which is operated by Genel Energy, were sold via tender in early April on the international market, marking the first oil export of KRG to a country other than Turkey, independent from the central Iraqi government, which says the trading of Kurdish oil without its permission is illegal.
The central Iraqi government, which has accused the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) in the north of “oil smuggling” due to its direct trade with international firms, recently said it would sue Genel over its oil sales to Turkey.