Russian oil firm LUKOIL is interested in bidding for at least two of the fields Iraq is offering in an oil and gas bidding round.
Russian oil firm LUKOIL is interested in bidding for at least two of the fields Iraq is offering in an oil and gas bidding round, two company sources said on Friday. "We are interested in both the West Qurna and the Rumaila oilfields," one source told Reuters, when asked for which fields LUKOIL might bid. LUKOIL may join forces with U.S. major ConocoPhillips to bid for the fields, he added, speaking on condition of anonymity on the sidelines of a workshop between Iraqi officials and oil firms on the bidding round.
Rumaila is the largest field on offer and alone accounts for nearly 15 percent of Iraq's oil reserves, the world's third largest.
LUKOIL has lobbied with Iraqi officials to revive a deal for West Qurna that it signed while Saddam Hussein was in power in Iraq. The sources declined to comment on whether LUKOIL was continuing those efforts.
The company had hoped that Russia's forgiving most of Iraq's $12.9 billion debt last year might help. Iraq has said LUKOIL would have to compete with other firms for the contract. But Baghdad has renegotiated and signed another Saddam-era deal with the Chinese National Petroleum Company.
LUKOIL said last year that it wanted to join forces with Conoco for bidding in Iraq. Conoco owns a 20 percent stake in LUKOIL.
Iraq is offering service contracts for six of its largest producing oil fields in the first bidding round since the U.S.-led invasion in 2003, as it looks to attract billions of dollars of investment to overhaul its dilapidated oil infrastructure and boost output.
Iraq has also offered two undeveloped gas fields in the round.