Latest Iraqi Oil Production Stats  

Posted by Big Gav in ,

Stuart at Early Warning has an update on oil production in Iraq - Latest Iraqi Oil Production Stats.

Here are the latest Iraqi oil production statistics (recall the history). The new slightly higher plateau of 2.6-2.7mbd that was first achieved at the end of last year has held since then.

At this point, compared to when I was first discussing this (eg here and here) it seems to me that the political stability risks have declined considerably. It now seems unlikely that Iraq will collapse into disorder when the US finally leaves altogether (though not impossible I suppose). However, there is still some level of armed insurrection, and Iraq still has to contend with a very old inadequate set of infrastructure (oil and otherwise) which will have to be upgraded and replaced.

So my favored scenario at this point would be that Iraq will eventually produce far more oil than it does today, but that the expansion will be slow and fitful, especially at first, and will fall behind the articulated schedule of the oil ministry. Peak production for this country is probably at least a decade away.



Oil and Gas Journal has a long article on Iraq's oil reserves by Tariq Shafiq - A veteran revisits Iraq's oil resource and lists implications of the magnitude.
Iraq’s oil reserves, revised to 143.5 billion bbl in late 2010 from the 115 billion bbl official figure that held for several years, will no doubt turn out to be much larger than the late-2010 estimate.

The Iraq Ministry of Oil also announced an estimate of potential reserves of 215 billion bbl.

In the nationalized decades leading up to the 1990s, 155 wells were drilled on 113 structures, many of which are 10 km long. Even structures that produced oil were not sufficiently investigated. The concept of what was commercial was influenced by oil priced at $1-3/bbl and conservative recovery factors.

The exploratory drilling density in Iraq’s 441,840 sq km is 1 well/2,900 sq km. Iraq is the least-explored Middle East country.

Iraq’s known oil reserves are roughly distributed almost one fourth in formations of Tertiary age, nearly three fourths in those of Cretaceous age, and a small percentage in Jurassic/Triassic.

Of 530 structural anomalies identified by geophysical means, the 113 wells established the presence of oil in 73. Reinterpretation of seismic using state of the art computer software indicates the presence of a large number of stratigraphic traps and many more structural anomalies than the delineated 530.

The new identified stratigraphic and structural anomalies, remaining identified but undrilled ones, untested shows, the many discovered fields—especially those in the south that are yet to be tested in the deeper (Lower Cretaceous, Jurassic, and Triassic) horizons, and Jurassic/Triassic oil resources in the relatively virgin Western Desert and the Folded Zone along the Zagros Belt will no doubt increase Iraq’s oil reserves to or beyond the latest estimates.

The author believes Iraq to be capable of increasing its oil production rate to 10 million b/d and possibly even to 12 million b/d.



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