Iraq intends to expand oil and gas concession areas for foreign companies seeking to invest in projects to maximise the OPEC member’s hydrocarbon resources, the Arab country’s Oil Minister was quoted on Friday as saying.

Hayan Abdel Ghani said Iraq is determined to tap its gas deposits to operate its power facilities and reduce reliance on gas imports, most of which come from nearby Iran.

“The Minister emphasised in a statement that there is a need to push ahead with gas projects to increase the country’s gas reserves...he also affirmed that the Ministry will work to increase foreign investment in gas projects and to expand the area of oil and gas concessions granted to foreign companies,” Iraq’s Shafaq News network said.

The network also quoted Ghani as saying that the state-owned Basra Oil Company needs to pursue a project to build a network of pipelines linking its oilfields to export terminals for exporting crude from South Iraq.

Over the past few years, Iraq has granted concessions to several foreign firms within plans to boost its gas resources, estimated at around four trillion cubic metres, and to increase production to run its power plants.

(Writing by Nadim Kawach; Editing by Anoop Menon)


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