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Chinese oil majors mull bids for Iraq oil       Updated: 2009-07-07 10:47

BEIJING, July 7 (Xinhua) -- China's three major oil companies are thinking of participating in Iraq's second auction of oil and gas fields later this year, reported Tuesday's China Daily.

China National Petroleum Corp. (CNPC) and China Petrochemical Corp. (Sinopec) may continue to bid in the second auction, as they "cannot neglect the rich oil and gas reserves in Iraq", the newspaper said, citing an unnamed source close to the companies.

It said just like in the first bidding round, these companies may choose to form consortia with foreign companies in the second round to reduce risks.

Iraq last Tuesday made its first auction of major oil contracts since the U.S.-led invasion. China's three oil majors all took part in the bidding, but only CNPC, which teamed up with BP, won a contract to develop the Rumaila oilfield.

The CNPC-BP contract was also the only one to be awarded in the first auction, as there were some differences between the Iraqi government and oil majors over payment terms.

After the first auction, Iraq said it would move up the date for the second round of tenders, which is reported to be at the end of this year.

Last year, CNPC signed a service agreement to help Iraqi partners develop the Al-Ahdab oilfield, 180 km southeast of Baghdad.;

CNPC will "use advanced technologies" to increase the oilfield's manufacturing capacity to 25,000 barrels per day within three years, and to 115,000 barrels per day within six years, the company has said.


Editor: Sun