Iraq cancels TPAO-led group's Mansuriya gas field contract -agency

Iraq has invited international energy companies to compete for developing the Mansuriya field

  
Image used for illustrative purpose. A worker is seen at the Zubair oilfield in Basra, Iraq May 9, 2018.

Image used for illustrative purpose. A worker is seen at the Zubair oilfield in Basra, Iraq May 9, 2018.

REUTERS/Essam al-Sudani

BAGHDAD - Iraq has cancelled a contract signed with a group led by Turkish Petroleum Corp (TPAO) to develop its Mansuriya gas field near the Iranian border, state news agency INA cited the oil minister as saying on Thursday.

Iraq has invited international energy companies to compete to develop the field, the agency quoted Oil Minister Ihsan Abdul Jabbar as saying, after the TPAO-led group suspended development in 2014 due to security concerns.

The oil ministry will select a partner that presents the "best technical solutions" to operate and develop the field, the minister said, according to INA.

In 2011, Iraq signed a deal with the group which included Korea Gas Corp (Kogas) 036460.KS and Kuwait Energy to develop the field in its volatile Diyala province.

The group halted development in 2014 due to security concerns after Islamic State militants overran large parts of Iraq.

Iraqi ministry officials said the TPAO-led group did not resume development work even after repeated government requests as security in the area improved.

State-backed TPAO was not immediately available to respond to a Reuters request for comment on Thursday. Neither Kogas not Kuwait Energy responded to emailed requests for comment.

(Reporting by Ahmed Rasheed; Editing by Jason Neely and Christopher Cushing) ((ahmed.rasheed@thomsonreuters.com; +964-7901-947-131; Reuters Messaging: ahmed.rasheed.thomsonreuters.com@thomsonreuters.net))

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