Iraq discusses Iran drilling its oil, gas fields
A high-ranking Iraqi delegation has visited Tehran and discussed oil and gas drilling by Iranian companies in the Arab country, the Mehr news agency says.
The closed-door talks were held between director general of the state-run Iraq Drilling Co. Idriss Mohsin al-Yasiri and CEO of Iran’s North Drilling Company Hedayatollah Khademi, it said.
The visit took place with the aim of “ceding some oil and gas drilling projects” by Iraq to the Iranian side, Mehr said.
Al-Yasiri said the Iranian company was able to provide a “full cycle of services” for drilling Iraqi oil and gas fields, given the technology and man power which it has in the field.
He said he expected the two sides to begin cooperation on vertical and directional drilling.
Khademi touted his company’s capabilities,saying it had logged new international records in drilling sour gas fields in South Pars amid US-led sanctions.
North Drilling was founded as an upstream subsidiary of the National Iranian Oil Company to operate and manage oil platforms in the Caspian Sea.
Yasiri said North Drilling could cooperate with private Iraqi companies, adding IDC was ready to coordinate possible tie-ups for an enduring presence in the Iraqi oil industry.
“The aim is to promote joint cooperation between Iraq and the Islamic Republic of Iran,” he said.
Yasiri said unlike state-run companies, private entities do not need the Iraqi parliament’s green light for foreign partnership.
Iran and Iraq have turned to close allies from staunch enemies under the former dictator Saddam Hussein who commanded a war between the neighbors eight years in 1980s.
The two countries signed an agreement in 2013 for transfer of Iranian natural gas to Iraq through a pipeline.
Iran is expected to initially deliver 4 million cubic meters of gas per day (mcm/d) and raise it to 35 mcm/d later to feed three power plants in Iraq.
Head of the National Iranian Gas Exports Company Ali Reza Kameli has said the gas delivery could begin in May depending on the security situation in Iraq but that seems unlikely due to the Arab country’s convoluted situation.