Latest Posts

Turkey seen as pipeline to EU gas market

by admin ~ September 30th, 2012

Northern Iraq’s Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) is set to explore a pipeline project through its northern neighbor Turkey in an attempt to reach wider European market, according to reports.

The Reuters report followed Iraqi dinar news, and quoted KRG minister Ashti Hawrami as saying that Iraq is considering building a pipeline to the city of Ceyhan in Turkey. This came after reports that the KRG successfully reduced tensions with Turkish authorities through a number of export deal agreements that are expected to boost the region’s economy, although it’s uncertain if and when these would impact the value of Dinar.

The said deal involves a gradual supply of 15 billion cubic meters of natural gas to Turkey.

“The country needs a new Turkey pipeline to transport oil from the central government and northern Iraq,” explains minister Hawrami during an energy meeting.

This new development is a welcome addition, according to Iraq analysts. Recently, Arbil’s KRG administration reached a deal with Baghdad to start making payments to foreign companies doing business in Northern Iraq by next week. Taking effect from the following month, the new project will easily enable the northern Iraq administration to reach its 2015 export target of one million barrels per day.

Currently, the country operates two pipelines in Turkey. Ceyhan hosts the country’s crude oil pipelines. Meanwhile, the proposed third pipeline is set to pump a barrels per day target ranging from 6 million to 7 million.

The promise of this recent development has caught the interests of economic analysts. Should the project push through, business organizations see a dynamic improvement in the economy, although the effect on the Dinar exchange rate is unclear. As foreign currency reserves come in, northern Iraq’s economy would surely receive a significant boost. This could then have a snowball effect on businesses, leading to all-round greater prosperity for the region.

In a previous announcement Monday, the Turkish Economy Ministry released a statement on Iraq’s halt of new company registrations seeking to do business in the country. According to the release, the Iraqi Trade Ministry has already approved and begun accepting applicants for new registration. The Turkish Economy Ministry said that the temporary postponement for registrations was due to particular technical requirements the Iraqi Trade Ministry imposed. The temporary hold on new registration was lifted last September 25.

Attempt To Revive the Hanging Gardens

by admin ~ September 27th, 2012

Nouri Al-Maliki, the Iraqi Prime Minister, has shown keen interest in developing Iraqi Tourism since his appointment in 2006. The office of the Prime Minister recently announced his approval of 100 billion in Iraqi dinars funding (Approx. $85m at the current value of dinar) the reconstruction of historical sites and associated infrastructure to attract tourism. Babylon, the ancient city of ruins, and one of the original “Seven Wonders of the World”, will be the main beneficiary of this approval.

Babylon, from the Greek word “kremastos” and the Latin word “pensilis” means hanging or overhanging. The city of hanging gardens was built by King Nebuchadnezzar to please his home sick wife, Amyitis, who was so displeased and frustrated seeing the flat and sun-baked Mesopotamia. The king built an array of roof-top gardens, artistic temples, majestic walls and palaces on an artificial mountain to replicate the birth place of Amyitis which was filled with greenery and rugged mountains. However, there is an alternative theory that the site was built by Assyrian Queen Semiramis.

The Hanging Gardens would have been a wonderful sight with its captivating greenery, the rudimentary technology invoked to water the plants at such heights, the fortified walls and the magnificent infrastructure that was developed from scratch to mystify generations for centuries. There have been contradicting theories on the statistics of actual infrastructure which existed and which was recorded to have existed. Let alone the records, the very thought of such a wonderland having existed, is mind blowing.

The late Sadaam Hussien, during his tenure as leader of Iraq, had previously attempted to rebuild the ruins of the hanging gardens. Sadaam engraved his name on the bricks of the buildings just as the king Nebuchadnezzar had. Sadaam had even placed a portrait of himself and the king at the entrance of the ruins. There were even plans to construct a cable car, post the Gulf war. However, on account of the the original Gulf War conflict, construction plans came to a halt. The provincial government re-opened the site for tourism back in 2009. A place of such a historical importance is certain to draw much tourist attention.

A 100 billion Iraqi Dinars (85 Million US Dollars as per the current Dinar exchange rate) has been sanctioned for the restoration of the historical marvel.

Iraq Oil Production Highest Since 1979

by admin ~ September 27th, 2012

Iraq’s crude oil production has risen to the highest level since 1979, according to a report from Bloomberg.

Citing Oil Ministry sources, the news agency says output has hit 3.328 million barrels a day (bpd), of which 2.484 million bpd are exported from Basra.

In June Iraq’s oil production overtook that of Iran’s for the first time since 1988, when the countries ended their eight-year war.


Iraq, Jordan to Build Oil Pipeline

by admin ~ September 26th, 2012

Iraq and Jordan have agreed to build a pipeline to supply Jordan with crude oil and natural gas, according to Petra, the Jordan News Agency.

Iraqi Oil Minister Abdul Karim Luaibi [Elaibi] said that the pipeline would carry crude oil to the Jordanian refinery in Zarqa for use in Jordan, and to the port of Aqaba for export.

The agency quotes an Iraqi official as saying that authorities in Baghdad have already signed a contract with an international consultant company to prepare a report on the project, which has a planned capacity of 1 million bpd.

Jordan and Iraq also agreed to increase the volumes of crude oil provided to the Kingdom from 10,000 barrels per day to 15,000.

The Jordanian Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources, Alaa Batayneh, said that Jordan has only received 25 per cent of the quantities the two countries agreed on due to logistic issues and technical reasons related to standards of oil requested by the refinery.

He added that a joint committee, to be chaired by ministers from both countries, will convene every six months, while subcommittees, to be headed by secretaries general, will meet every three months to follow up on implementing the memorandum of understanding.



Iraq/Kurdistan Announce Plan to Settle Ongoing Oil Dispute

by admin ~ September 25th, 2012

A new dawn beckons in Iraq following the news that several important steps were taken between central government and the semi-autonomous territory of Kurdistan to resolve the ongoing dispute between them concerning oil and oil payments.

Baghdad reportedly was the first to attempt to resolve this situation with its northern neighbor when, surprisingly it agreed to pay the oil companies that are operating there. In return, Kurdistan has promised to keep exports steady at 140,000bpd, and to raise them up to 200,000bpd by the end of this year.

Earlier this year Kurdistan stopped its oil shipments as a result of the central governments’ refusal to honor contracts, sell or buy dinars with oil companies in the region. The central government referred to the oil companies status as “illegal”. In addition to these actions, Baghdad went so far as to threaten to withhold millions of dollars (worth billions of dinars at current dinar exchange rates) from the budget that was previously agreed upon for Kurdistan.

The return of the revenue to Kurdistan from restarting these exports will very quickly amount to billions of dollars. Currently, the central government needs to pay less than $1 billion to the oil companies. (*amount is in U.S dollars – not Iraqi Dinars).  A very small amount when compared to the total of exports from Kurdistan in one year.

Due to the renewed cooperation between the governments and the new developments in their relationship, the two sides are now in a much better position to negotiate future oil deals and to determine a more permanent solution in regards to the exports. This is expected to reduce tensions in a part of the world that is always in turmoil. Analysts question the long term viability of these agreements but are hopeful for a permanent solution.

It was noted that Gulf Keystone and other oil companies that operate in this region experienced a slight rise in the price of their shares directly following this breaking news.

*($1 USD equals about 1,165 Dinar based on Iraqi Dinar exchange rates at the time of publication) 

Iraq Energy Forum Details Announced

by admin ~ September 25th, 2012

Baghdad will host Iraq’s most anticipated energy event thus far on the 12/12/2012. Founded and hosted by Iraq Energy Institute (IEI), the Iraq Energy Forum (IEF) represents a unique gathering, distinguished by its exclusive line-up of senior Iraqi government officials and decisions makers, ambassadors, IOCs, industry leaders and cross-sector world renowned industry experts.

The event will be more than a conference and a networking opportunity, it will be a medium to influence and shape the Iraqi energy industry in the next phase of its evolution, as stakeholders will have the opportunity to directly engage with regulators, policy and decision makers, exchange views, as well as first hand and early insight into the investment and development plans and project announcements.

The Forum will duly commence on the 12th of December, with day one focusing on upstream-downstream challenges and opportunities, in addition to capacity building within Iraq. Day two of the event will focus power generation needs and projects, infrastructure challenges and investments opportunities, in addition to sustainability and resource-diversification.

Day one of the Iraq Energy Forum will be preceded by three simultaneous full day master-classes on the 11th of December. The master-classes will follow the theme of the Forum, with Master-Class 1 on Petroleum Development Policies & Field Operations which will cover all aspects of upstream sector in Iraq. Master-Class 2 on IPP & EPC Contracts will address IPP programmes, and tendering & contracting processes, conducive to preparing successful bids. Master-Class 3 will revolve around capacity building and improved on-going training and development.

The Master-Classes will provide participants with unparalleled insight into technical and procedural aspects of the industry in Iraq that would facilitate commercial success in a growing and evolving energy sector, that holding generous untapped potential. Mr Luay al-Khatteeb, Founder & CEO of Iraq Energy Institute has said this year on Bloomberg: “projected global demand will need two more of Saudi Arabia by 2035, and the only candidate right now that we can think of to fill the gap, and boost security of energy supply prospects is Iraq”.

Iraq’s oil production reached a record high of over 3 mbpd in 2012 and the government is committed to ambitious plans of at least tripling production before the decade’s end. Further, vast amount of gas reserves in Iraq remain underutilise, and Iraq’s urgent power needs are well publicised.

Infrastructure de-bottlenecking, development and rehabilitation projects are paramount in dealing with the challenges ahead, therefore ample opportunities to capitalise and get involved in the next wave of investments will be on offer and should not to be missed. According to Prof. Ali Al Sayigh, Director General of the World Renewable Energy Congress and Chairman of the Board of Iraq Energy Institute: “ the energy industry in Iraq has made great strides so far, but it is time to introduce sustainability as building block for future developments and plans, since the Iraqi energy sector is not only vital to the Iraqi economy, but global energy markets at large”.

The Iraq Energy Forum has strong state support, with several confirmed ministers and heads of the decisions making committees in Iraq, which will provide further insight into government policies and directions, helping investors plan their strategies and investments for Iraq with optimal efficiency. The Forum benefits from enviable Ambassadorial participation, and the event will also close with an Ambassadorial Reception, which provides further networking opportunities.


Iraq Allocates $275bn to New Projects

by admin ~ September 24th, 2012

Iraq’s Planning Minister, Ali al-Shukri (pictured), has said the country has earmarked between $250 billion and $275 billion for infrastructural development projects over the next five years.

At the Iraq Finance 2012 conference in London the minister called for foreign companies to invest in all sectors of the Iraqi economy, including construction, agriculture and education.

He added that currently only about 30 percent of Iraq’s budget was available for capital projects, saying that this was too little.

Iraq spends $14-$15 billion annually to service its national debt.


ShaMaran Petro Discovers Oil in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq

by admin ~ September 23rd, 2012

The ShaMaran Petroleum Corporation has announced its very pleased with the test results of its Altrush-2 (AT-2) appraisal well. The well is only 3.2 km from their AT-1 well, which is also located in the Kurdistan region. The cost of the new AT-2 well came in at 30% below its expected Iraqi dinar budget and was completed ahead of schedule. The facility is a 1,750-meter deep well, and was spudded on May 23rd of this year. Testing to date has shown a capacity of 42,212 barrels of oil per day (bpd) and none of the tests performed had any measurable amounts of formation water, although the test rates were limited to surface testing equipment only.

Separate tests were also performed in both the open hole and cased hole formations. The upper part of the Butmah flowed up to a maximum of 1,450bpd under nitrogen lift. Towards the end of the test it was producing 100% 9-degree API oil. A reservoir zone within the Adaiyah anhydrite flowed up to 650bpd of 11-degree API of dry oil. GEP has filed a notice of discovery to the ministry of Natural Resources of Kurdistan in accordance with the requirement of the Production Sharing Contract for both the Adaiyah and the Butmah.

The second phase of the 3D seismic acquisition was completed in August of this year in the eastern part of the Atrush block. Tendering is underway for the lease of an Extended Well test Facility. An award is expected shortly. Current plans are for a re-completed AT-1 to be connected to the EWTF with the first oil being pumped in early 2013.

GEP holds an 80% working interest in the Altrush block, while Aspect Holdings LLC has a 66.5% interest and ShaMaran Petro (through its subsidiary ShaMaran Ventures) has a 33.5% interest in GEP. Marathon Oil KDV B.V. (a subsidiary of Marathon Oil corp.) also has a 20% interest.

President and CEO of ShaMaran, Pradeep Kabra commented: “The results from the Atrush 2 well demonstrated the excellent production capability of the BSAM reservoir and the discovery of additional resource potential of the Butmah and Adaiyah regions. We commend the operator GEP on the outstanding job done by them during the drilling and testing of the well and look forward to continuing our work with the Kurdistan Regional Government to appraise the value of Dinar and develop this world class discovery.”

Siemens Wins $129M Contract with KAR Group

by admin ~ September 21st, 2012

The reconstruction of Iraq following the election of its democratic government in 2006 is being funded by the Iraq Relief and Reconstruction Fund (IRFF), which is mentored, monitored and administered by United Nations and the World Bank. The funds, meant for Iraq’s reconstruction process, are disbursed through elected representatives of the government and various other non-governmental agencies.

Most of the endeavors driven towards the development of Iraq have been successful. The development process, inherent by nature, has been aiding the local economy and in turn, the quality of life. Proof of this can be seen in current revival of the country’s real estate market, an increase in used car sales and mobile phones etc., an increasing GDP and the value of Dinar holding steady.  These positive indicators from all economic spheres underline Iraq’s continuing stabilization and its prospects for growth.

As part of its reconstruction efforts, foreign players have been inducted in to Iraq to offer their best services and products to build an Iraq “for the people”, “by the people” and “of the people”. There are several agencies working on health sector, water resource management and what not. Recently, Siemens, the global leader in energy sector, won an order worth $129M USD at today’s Iraqi dinar exchange rates.

The contract mandates Siemens to provide Khormala gas turbine plant, located at 25 kilometers from south of Erbil, with four SGT5-2000E gas turbines and four SGen-100A generators, in addition to ancillary and auxiliary units. The Khormala power plant is being constructed by KAR Construction and Engineering Company, owned and run by the KAR Group. This 640 MW is the major power project for KAR, who is purported to run the facility as well. The plant is expected to be commissioned in 2013 at a cost of several billion Iraqi dinars. A grand successful completion could power the city to meet one fourth of the persisting power demand. This is a reassuring message, for power plays the key role in various industries and is imperative for the reconstruction process to effect.

Iraq’s economy has improved considerably in recent years, primarily due to its reconstruction efforts, instilling hopes of a better Iraq in the near future. The increase in Dinar exchange rate and trade stands testimony to the hopes of a reviving economy. An economy, promising growth, is sure to revive no matter the odds.

Multi-Million Deals Expected at Iraq’s Leading Construction Show

by admin ~ September 21st, 2012

Project Iraq 2012” expected to lay solid foundations for the region’s bustling construction sector


For the fifth consecutive year, “Project Iraq” – the International Exhibition for Construction and Environmental Technology, Materials and Equipment – will be held at Erbil International Fair Ground (EIF), bringing together local, regional and international companies and decision-makers in the construction sector.

Organized by IFP Iraq – member of International Fairs & Promotions (IFP) Group, Project Iraq is the largest specialized exhibition in Iraq and one of the fastest growing shows in the entire Middle East. In last year’s edition, the show brought together 393 local, regional and international companies from 20 countries, scoring a 30% growth in the number of participants.

Project Iraq’s ongoing success is widely influenced by the country’s dynamic construction market which is fueled by reconstruction and development projects across all economic sectors, including infrastructure, housing, hospitality, education and others. In 2010, Iraq’s construction industry was valued at US$ 5.6 billion with an annual growth forecast of 6.18% until 2014. Today, the busy pipeline of current and underway projects is triggering a massive demand in terms of building material, technology, and qualified human resources.

Consequently, “Project Iraq 2012” is the ideal platform for engineers, energy experts, field specialists, investors and entrepreneurs, buyers, and distributors to gather, share innovations and seize valuable business opportunities. Expanding over 11,000 sqm, the show is expected to draw a professional crowd of more than 23,000 visitors, giving them the exclusive opportunity to learn more about the latest industry trends from more than 400 international exhibitors; to network with key decision-makers and other professional trade visitors from both the public and private sectors; explore new business opportunities, joint ventures, and much more.

Supported by a wide pool of international official bodies from Belgium, China, Egypt, Germany, Greece, Iran, Italy, Syria and Turkey, and local governmental bodies including the Ministries of Consternation & Housing and the Ministries of Electricity, “Project Iraq 2012”has attracted international participants from the four corners of the world namely from Belgium, China, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, India, Iraq, Iran, Italy, Jordan, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Lebanon, Spain, Syria, Thailand, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom.

Exhibits at the show will include the latest innovations covering all construction aspects such asbuilding material, stones and stone products, heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems, machinery and vehicles, sanitary products, wood products, metal products amongst other; and aimed at helping visitors improve their company productivity, upgrade their projects’ quality, grow their business and deliver faster.

Adding value and depth to every visitor’s experience, Project Iraq is held concurrently with “Energy Iraq 2012” -the 2nd International Exhibition for Electricity, Alternative Energy, Lighting and HVAC - the only international exhibition in Iraq and the neighboring countries exclusively dedicated to electricity, alternative energy, lighting and HVAC.

Don’t miss Project Iraq 2012 from 17 to 20 September 2012, atErbil International Fair Ground (EIF) from 14:00 till 20:00 daily.

Copyright © 20010, Dinar Inc., All rights reserved.