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Shell makes move into Iraq

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Shell makes move into Iraq

By Ed Crooks

Published: September 23 2008 03:00 | Last updated: September 23 2008 03:00

Royal Dutch Shell has opened an office in Baghdad as Europe’s biggest energy company became the first western oil major to sign a deal with the Iraqi government since the US-led invasion of 2003.

Linda Cook, Shell’s head of gas and power, was in Baghdad yesterday to sign a multi-billion dollar agreement to make commercial use of gas currently being flared off in southern Iraq.

The initial agreement is only for a feasibility study and commercial principles for a joint venture between Shell, which would have 49 per cent, and the Iraqi government with 51 per cent. However, the potential is large. The oil-producing region covered by the agreement is 19,000 square km in area and there is 700m cubic feet of gas being burned off every day: the same energy content as about 130,000 barrels of oil per day. Ed Crooks

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