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Gulf Keystone finances Iraqi developments

Oct. 5, 2012 at 8:04 AM

LONDON, Oct. 5 (UPI) -- British energy company Gulf Keystone Petroleum said revenue generated from a bond offering would help fund developments in the Kurdish region of Iraq.

Gulf Keystone said it was launching an offering for $200 million in unsecured convertible bonds due October 2017. Funds raised by the offering would contribute to development of the Shaikan block in the Kurdish region of Iraq.

The company said ongoing work to commission two facilities in the region could lead to the production of 40,000 barrels of oil per day by the middle of next year. Full-scale production of 150,000 bpd should be reached by 2015, the company said.

In November the explorer revised the reserve estimate at its Shaikan oil discovery in Iraq up to 10.5 billion barrels.

Gulf Keystone Chief Executive Officer Todd Kozel said the bond financing was a "milestone" that "shows an increasing confidence of international markets in doing business in the Kurdistan region of Iraq."

The Kurdish and central government of Iraq last month agreed to settle outstanding issues over payments to foreign companies working in the semiautonomous Kurdish north. Politic disputes between both sides had prompted the U.S. government to warn of the risks of doing business in Iraq.

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