BAGHDAD- Iraq signed a deal with Russia's Stroytransgaz for the exploration and development of a bloc in the western Anbar province on Wednesday, the oil ministry said in a statement.

Preliminary studies indicate the bloc contains reserves of between 2 and 4 billon barrels of oil equivalent of which gas constitutes 60-70%, Oil Minister Thamer Ghadhban was quoted as saying.

The deal is subject to final approval by Iraq's cabinet.

(Reporting by Ahmed Aboulenein and Ahmed Rasheed; writing by Ahmed Aboulenein; editing by Jason Neely) ((; +964 790 191 7021; Reuters Messaging: