Basrah Gas Company (BGC: state-owned South Gas Company 51%, Shell 44%, Mitsubishi 5%) is preparing to bring online its first 200mn cfd BNGL gas processing unit by June, just in time for summer when Iraq’s power demand increases with rising temperatures.

The plant will help Iraq curb its costly practice of gas flaring, which typically sees 50% of its 3bn cfd wellhead gas production go up in smoke. Speaking to state Iraqia TV last week, Deputy Minister of Oil, Hamid Younis gave figures that imply this performance has already improved somewhat. He says gas processing capacity currently stands at 1.65bn cfd: based on his estimate of 2.85bn cfd current raw gas output, this implies that Iraq could capture around 58% of wellhead output. (CONTINUED - 1058 WORDS)