EghtesadOnline: Iraq is close to reaching a deal with oil majors BP and Eni for an export pipeline project that was initially planned as part of a mega-deal with US energy giant ExxonMobil, according to five senior Iraqi oil officials involved in the negotiations.
Under the proposed $400 million agreement, British company BP and Italy’s Eni ENI.NI would run the scheme to build two seabed oil pipelines for Iraq’s southern exports through the Persian Gulf, the sources told Reuters, declining to be named as the discussions have not been made public.
The pipeline work was meant to be part of a larger, $53 billion project that Exxon looked poised to move ahead with earlier this year, but an agreement with Baghdad was held back by contractual wrangling and security concerns, the officials said.
The 30-year mega-project is the focus of Exxon’s plans to expand in Iraq, OPEC’s second-largest producer, and a chipping away of schemes from the deal could drag on the company’s ambitions, Financial Tribune reported.
The BP and Eni talks with Baghdad follow an announcement from Iraqi officials in June that South Korea’s Hyundai Engineering & Construction Co Ltd had been selected to build a $2.4 billion seawater injection facility - another part of the deal originally on the table with Exxon.
ExxonMobil and Eni declined to comment, while BP had no immediate comment.