A source close to the Oil Ministry says the names of the firms and the details of the five oil fields they will work on, will be delayed until next month, from the original 30 June date, while cabinet approval is sought for the contracts.

Technical service agreements have previously been signed with oil majors including ExxonMobil Corporation, Chevron and ConocoPhillips, all of the US, the UK/Dutch Shell Group and the UK’s BP.

The first round of tenders will focus on the development of existing fields, including South Rumeila and North Rumeila, West Qurna, Zubair, Missan, Kirkuk and the western Akkas gas field, although just five of them are likely to be the subject of new technical service agreements.

Oil Minister Hussain al-Shahristani told MEED earlier this year that each contract, thought to be worth about $500m, would increase production by 100,000 b/d per field (MEED 8:2:08).

Details of Iraq’s first post-war bid round for the long-term development of oil fields will now be announced on 30 June with about 40 companies prequalified.

Iraq has revealed plans to more than double oil production within five years in tandem with international oil companies.