BAGHDAD: Iraq has pre-qualified 12 companies and joint ventures to build an $18-billion export pipeline to Jordan, the Oil Ministry said Wednesday.
The plan is to export 1 million barrels per day of Iraqi crude to Jordan, of which 150,000 bpd will supply Jordan’s Zarqa refinery.
The remainder would be exported through the Red Sea port of Aqaba, reducing Iraq’s reliance on the Strait of Hormuz shipping route.
“It’s a pre-emptive plan to absorb higher production that international oil firms are planning to achieve by 2017. More export outlets mean more safety for Iraq’s exports and its customers,” an Oil Ministry spokesman said.
After stagnating for years due to war and sanctions, Iraq’s oil output began to rise significantly in 2010 and output reached 3.1 million bpd in August, according to the latest Reuters survey.
Iraq expects output to rise by 400,000 bpd by the end of this year, mainly due to the startup of the Majnoon oil field operated by Royal Dutch Shell.
Among the shortlisted companies set for the next stage of the selection process to build the pipeline from Haditha near Baghdad to the Jordanian border are: China National Petroleum Corporation, Consolidated Contractors Company, Daewoo International, Lukoil, Marubeni, Mitsui, Saipem and Toyota Tsusho.