* Biggest stumbling block on financing cleared
* Announcement in September: Kyodo quotes Iraqi official
TOKYO Aug 25 Japan's Nippon Oil Corp 5001.T
and partners have obtained a basic agreement to develop Iraq's
huge Nassiriya oil field, Japan's Kyodo news agency said on
Tuesday, citing sources involved in the negotiations.
The group and Iraq have signed a memorandum of understanding
as they have solved the biggest hurdle on financing issues, the
The announcement will be made in September, the report said,
quoting Iraq's Deputy Oil Minister Abdul Karim Louaibi.
A Nippon Oil spokesman in Tokyo declined to comment.
"Various negotiations are under way and we are making
progress. But we are not aware at this point that a final
agreement has been reached," an official at Japan's trade
ministry in Tokyo said.
Louaibi said on Monday that Nippon Oil and partners were
"very close" to winning the contract after a deal was reached on
Nippon Oil Corp and its partners -- oil explorer Inpex Corp
(1605.T) and plant engineering firm JGC Corp (1963.T) -- are
vying with Italy's Eni (ENI.MI) to develop Nassiriya, which Iraqi
officials say has a capacity to produce 100,000 barrels per day
within 18 months.
(Reporting by Osamu Tsukimori and Chikako Mogi)