SAN RAMON, Calif., July 20 (UPI) -- U.S. supermajor Chevron Corp. announced it took an 80 percent interest and operatorship of concessions in the Kurdish north of Iraq.
Chevron announced that it acquired the interest from Reliance Exploration and Production for the Rovi and Sarta blocks in the semiautonomous Kurdish north.
The central government in Baghdad and Kurdistan Regional Government are at odds over contracts with international oil companies. Iraq lacks legislation that governs its energy sector effectively and Baghdad says unilateral action from the KRG is illegal. Baghdad in April declared a Kurdish deal with U.S. supermajor Exxon frozen.
Kurdish officials said they're doing nothing to violate the national constitution, though a move by Turkey to take on oil shipments from the Kurdish north soured relations between Baghdad and Ankara.
Saudi Arabia, Iran and Iraq make up the top three in terms of oil production among members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries.
Iraq in May auctioned 12 oil and natural gas exploration licenses. The country awarded two contracts for oil and one for natural gas.
The two blocks for Chevron are north of the Kurdish capital Erbil and cover a combined area of 490 square miles.
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