November 27, 2018 / 3:01 PM / 15 days ago

Iraq approves China drilling deal for West Qurna Two oilfield: sources

BASRA, Iraq (Reuters) - Iraq has approved a $156.74 million drilling deal with China’s Bohai Drilling Engineering Co. for the West Qurna Two oilfield, two Iraqi oil officials said on Tuesday.

Under the 24-month contract, Bohai would drill 28 production oil wells at West Qurna Two, operated by Russia’s Lukoil , the officials said. Work will start in January and there is a deadline for completion of end 2020, they said.

Production at West Qurna Two, in southern Iraq west of Basra is now about 400,000 barrels per day (bpd), according to an oil official with knowledge of the field’s output operations.

Officials from the state-run Basra Oil Company BOC said the company was in talks with Bohai to award it a second drilling contract for West Qurna 2, which could be worth up to $148 million.

“We are in the process of initial talks with Bohai to drill an additional 26 oil wells in West Qurna phase two,” said one BOC official.

Reporting by Aref Mohammed and Ahmed Rasheed; Editing by Edmund Blair and Jane Merriman

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