Iraqi Oil Minister Thamir Ghadhban met this week with Lukoil President Vagit Alekperov in St. Petersburg to discuss several topics regarding the firm’s expanding presence in Iraq’s oil and gas sector. Lukoil not only operates the 400,000 b/d West Qurna-2 field (Lukoil 75%, North Oil 25%) but also Block 10 where the firm is pushing to develop the 2.5bn barrel Eridu field (Lukoil 60%, Impex 40%).

Lukoil says Mr Alekperov and Mr Ghadhban discussed “the possibility of early commissioning” of the field, a move which Lukoil’s Finance Director Yaroslav Okulov told MEES last year could see production “quickly” begin ramping up to 100,000 b/d as soon as 2021 followed by 290,000 b/d in the mid-2020s (MEES, 12 October 2018). Mr Ghadhban more recently told MEES that the ministry is yet to see Lukoil’s fast-track plan, but there are “differences with them regarding the commercial side” (MEES, 12 April). (CONTINUED - 176 WORDS)