Reliance Industries Limited has been shortlisted along with six other firms by Iraq to develop its Nasriya oilfield and to construct an associated refinery which will have 300,000 barrels per day capacity. RIL led by MukeshAmbani had shown interest in the construction of this refinery.
According to the Iraq’s oil ministry, these seven selected firms will now be invited by Iraq to evaluate data packages and analyze and discuss the contract terms. The final result will be declared around the end of this year.
Refinery has been the core business for Reliance since its inception.RILis making a fresh new start in Iraq. Last year, in July -2012, the overseas arm of Reliance i.e. Reliance Exploration and Production DMCC had sold its stake in Rovi and Sarta blocks in Kurdistan to America’s Chevron Group. The company has previously faced the consequences of the volatile political situation in Iraq, because the latter didn’t recognize the regional Kurdistan government’s political autonomy. Now, Reliance Industries Limited has moved on from the undesirable outcome at Kurdistan. It had shown interest in the development of this 4 billion barrel Nasriya oilfield.
Iraq is a part of the OPEC (Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries). The vision of the OPEC nation now,is to increase the refining capacity of its existing plants from 567,000 barrels per day (bpd) to 750,000 bpd. The new refinery at Nasriya is a part of this expansion.The OPEC is also planning to set up new refineries along with Nasriya at Karbala, Kirkuk and Missan. If RIL gets the final approval from the Iraqgovernment, it is the best time to do business with it. The situation is normalizing in the weary oil-producing country after a series of setbacks.Also, Iraq is now focused to increase its crude production to 5 to 6 million bpd by 2015.
At par with RIL, the otherfirms which qualified are ‘Total’ from France, Russia’s Lukoil and Zarubezhneft, CNPC from China, America’s Brown Energy and JGC &Tonen General of Japan. These companies were shortlisted from fourteen companies around the world, who had expressed interest in this project.