Iraq’s Oil Ministry is planning to hold the first in a series of roadshows to attract interest in developing and financing a 2,000 kilometre oil export pipeline in London in October, according to Ghassan Ashqar, senior vice president at SNC Lavalin, which is working for the government on the project.
The roadshow is aimed at attracting foreign investment in the pipeline project and is expected to target Middle East sovereign wealth funds, among others.
The scheme, which is a vital part of the development of Iraq’s oil industry and is expected to cost several billion dollars, will stretch from near Basra in southern Iraq to Haditha in the centre of the country. It will then head west through Jordan to a terminal at Aqaba. Under the original scheme the pipeline would have complemented another pipeline through Syria, although the civil war in that country has led to those plans being delayed.
“Iraq aims to increase production to 10 million barrels a day (b/d) of crude and most of this is going to come from the southern areas,” says Ashqar, speaking at the MEED UAE Hydrocarbons EPC Projects conference in Abu Dhabi this week.
The Basra to Haditha pipeline is expected to have a capacity of 2.25 million b/d, while the Iraq to Jordan pipeline will be 1 million b/d.
Ashqar added that the pipeline will be procured using a combination of conventional engineering procurement and construction bidding and a Build, Own, Operate, Transfer element. The government of Iraq has set up a special purpose vehicle to execute the project.
Baghdad’s original plans to build an export pipeline through Syria were derailed by the increasingly violent civil war in the country. A road show was planned in May to attract interest. Baghdad had sought to reach an agreement with international developers before the middle of 2013, with construction scheduled for completion in 2016. It is now effectively on hold at least until the political situation in Syria is resolved.