Iraqi committee supports dialogue with Chevron to develop oil exploration blocs

A view shows the al-Shuaiba oil refinery in Basra, Iraq, April 20, 2017. (Reuters)

SULAIMANI (ESTA) — An Iraqi governmental committee approved on Monday that a dialogue be conducted with Chevron Corp to develop four exploration blocks in the southern Zhi Qar province, Iraq’s oil ministry said.

The ministerial energy committee also approved the expansion of the Diwaniya oil refinery, in the south, the oil ministry said in a statement.

Iraq, OPEC’s second-largest producer, relies on oil exports for nearly all its state revenue.

In March, Iraq’s state-owned marketer SOMO awarded fuel oil supply contracts to Chevron and Reliance, Reuters reported.

Chevron Corp, Reliance Industries Ltd and an unidentified Iraqi oil trader were awarded the six-month SRFO supply contract with 50% of the monthly volume going to Chevron and 25% of the volume going to Reliance and the oil trader each, sources told Reuters.

The supply contract was awarded at a premium of about $25 per ton to Middle East quotes for high-sulphur fuel with a viscosity of 180-centistoke, two of the sources said.

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