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Shell sees Iraq’s Majnoon at 175,000BPD by year-end

Shell sees Iraq’s Majnoon at 175,000BPD by year-end

Iraq's Majnoon oilfield, operated with Royal Dutch Shell, should be ready to produce 175,000 barrels per day (bpd) by the end of 2012, an output level that triggers cost recovery and service fee payments, a senior company official said on Tuesday.

February 8, 2012 12:29 by

The 12.6 billion barrels Majnoon is one of the major fields alongside Rumaila, West Qurna Phase One and Zubair that the OPEC-member is developing with foreign companies in the south as it recovers from years of war and sanctions.

“I would be happy if I have most of the facilities ready and constructed by the end of this year. We are working very hard to do that,” Ole Myklestad, Shell’s manager at Majnoon, told Reuters at the site.

Iraqi officials say the field could reach that output from current production of around 54,000 bpd by August, depending on pipeline infrastructure, completed wells and also visa delays for foreign contractors.

Myklestad said operations to remove thousands of old landmines and explosives left during the Iran-Iraq war had required more effort than originally envisaged.

Shell has spent $30 million on mine clearance so far and planned another $20 million this year, he said.

He said Shell had spent around $1 billion since taking over the field in 2010, and planned to invest another $1 billion in 2012. Total spending over the life of the 20-year project would be around $50 billion.

Shell and minority partner Petronas of Malaysia, are targetting production of 1.8 million bpd by 2017.

Offering a more optimistic outlook, Mehdi Badi, head of the joint management committee for the field, told Reuters the project could reach 175,000 bpd by the end of August.

“This definitely depends on how many wells are drilled and completed and the availability of interior pipelines and export pipelines,” Mehdi said, speaking at the inauguration of a new jetty at Majnoon.

Three rigs are working at Majnoon, which hit as high as 90,000 bpd output in December 2010. Work on a de-gassing station has temporarily reduced production, Badi said.

Production at the field was around 45,000 bpd when Shell took it over in 2010. Shell and Malaysia’s Petronas won rights to develop the 12.6 billion barrel field at a 2009 auction. (By Peg Mackey) *Image from

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