Violence not affecting key Iraqi oil field, says Gulf Keystone Petroleum

Company defiant amid uptick in Iraq violence.
By Daniel J. Graeber Follow @dan_graeber Contact the Author   |  Aug. 28, 2014 at 10:25 AM
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LONDON, Aug. 28 (UPI) -- Operations at a key oil field in the Kurdish north of Iraq are "essentially uninterrupted" by violence, the top executive of Gulf Keystone Petroleum said.

Peshmerga, a Kurdish military force, has fought against the Islamic State, the Sunni-led insurgency group that's taken control over parts of northwestern Iraq and Syria. Some energy companies operating in the region have suspended operations as a security precaution.

John Gerstenlauer, chief executive officer at Gulf Keystone, said operations in the region are still in service.

"Our operations in the Kurdistan region ... are progressing well with the two existing Shaikan production facilities producing in the range of 20,000 - 25,000 barrels of oil per day and crude oil export deliveries continuing essentially uninterrupted since late November 2013 to date," he said.

The company said it sold around 100,000 barrels of oil to the domestic market during the first half of the year. Crude oil export deliveries by truck to the Turkish sea port of Ceyhan totaled 2.2 million barrels of oil.

Gross production from Shaikan, the company said, is close to 5.5 million barrels.

The company, which has headquarters in London, estimates Shaikan could hold as much as 10.5 billion barrels of oil.

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