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Iraq is planning to market two types of Basra crude, light and heavy, as of next year. Traders say the decision to split the main oil export stream comes as a result of the deteriorating quality of oil producers in the southern Basra province, due to the higher volumes of heavier grades coming on stream. The award of a new contract for further development of the ExxonMobil-operated West Qurna-1 field means there is more heavy oil to come.
TWO FROM 2015
Iraq’s state oil marketer SOMO has informed clients that it plans to market both Basrah Heavy and Basrah Light, and set separate official selling prices for each grade from 2015, a trading source says. Iraq is currently exporting only Basrah Light crude, a designation that does not reflect the specification of the cocktail of crudes that is being exported at the present time.
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