Iraq’s 4th energy auction postponed to April

Iraq_energy_auctionThe 4th oil and gas auction in Iraq, initially scheduled to take place on March 7-8, has been pushed back to April 11-12, 2012.

During this period, 12 new gas and oil exploration blocks will be auctioned to international energy firms, a senior oil ministry official said.

On pushing back the date

"We have decided to push back the bidding process in order to give companies more time to consider the (proposed) final contract model and also in response to requests by many firms to postpone the auction," Abdul-Mahdy Al-Ameedi, director of the oil ministry contracts and licensing directorate, was quoted as saying by Reuters.

46 energy companies qualified

Iraq has qualified 46 energy companies to participate in the auction, which is expected to add 29 trillion cubic feet of gas and 10 billion barrels of oil to Iraqi reserves.

Ameedi said 37 energy companies bought a data package with the initial tender protocols during a roadshow held in Amman in September. The final model contract will be issued in March.

Need time to study changes

"After discussing the contract terms with interested firms in Amman, the oil ministry has made further amendments and changes to the model contract and the companies need time to study the changes," Ameedi added.

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