Iraq Government Puts 6 Oil Fields on Auction
The Iraqi government opened six oil fields to international bidding today, as the nation attempts to boost daily production by 60 percent.
The potential participation of big Western companies like BP, Chevron, Exxon Mobil, Shell and Total SA in Iraq's oil industry was criticised in recent weeks, following published reports that several are close to signing no-bid contracts with the Iraqi government.
Those contracts are expected to be announced sometime later, but Iraqi Oil Minister Hussain al-Shah-Ristani instead named 35 companies that would be qualified to bid on service contracts for 6 oilfields.
All fields are currently producing oil, and he said the new contracts would raise Iraq's production by 1.5 million barrels per day.
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