A combination of customs delays, bureaucracy and tough operating conditions is holding back Iraqi upstream growth. Delays to both the 175,000 b/d phase 1 of the Shell-led Majnoun project and the 40,000-60,000 b/d phase 1 of Gazprom’s Badra has prompted downward revisions of MEES estimates for Iraqi capacity for both 2013-2014.

MEES’ low scenario for effective Iraqi production capacity of 3.2mn b/d is over 200,000 b/d lower than projections done as recently as March (MEES, 29 March). (CONTINUED - 420 WORDS)