Iraq’s proven reserves are in the order of 143 billion barrels, the third largest in the world. Proven reserves are found in 79 fields (70 oil and 9 gas), of which only 23 are producing. Additionally the probable reserves are estimated to the order of 214 Billion barrels
Current proven gas reserves are in the order of 128 TCF of which 92 is associated gas and 36 non-associated. The probable gas reserves are estimated to the order of 325 TCF 164 associated and 161 non-associated
In the last two years Iraq, through two bidding rounds, concluded 11 service contracts with IOC’s and National oil companies mostly in consortia for the additional development of existing brown fields and development of some discovered and appraised fields(green fields).A third round was also made for 3 discovered and appraised free gas fields. A fourth bidding round for 12 potential exploration blocks was also announced in 2011 and will be finalized early 2012.
The existing Iraqi refineries, with a total present capacity of almost 600,000 bbl/d do not meet the current demand mix. Despite improvements in recent years, the sector has not been able to meet domestic demand for most refined products, and the refineries produce too much heavy fuel oil. As a result, Iraq continues to import about one fourth of the local petroleum products demand.
Plans for modernizing, expanding and complexing of these existing plants to produce more and better quality fuels are already on the way.
Additionally four new refineries with a total capacity of 740 kb/d are planned; one with a capacity of 300kb/d and two with 150kb/d and one with 140 kb/d. These new refineries are open for private investment.
As for gas processing, rehabilitation and expansion of existing plants in the Kirkuk and Basra are planned to pick up the continuing flared gas from some of the producing fields in the south and to accommodate some of the additional gas volume that will be produced from the brown and green fields that have been contracted for development with IOC’s.
Of course additional new processing plants will have to be built across the country depending on geographical locations where new gas volumes will be available from the new oil production.
Iraq has an extensive pipeline network, internally for crude oil and raw gas feeding refineries and gas processing plants, and for oil and gas products from the said plants to in-country consumers, and out-country exports across neighboring countries. To handle all oil and gas fields target production rates, much of the existing infrastructures will have to be rehabilitated and huge new structures will have to be built inside and outside Iraq