Baghdad: Iraq plans to spend $130 billion on the country's upstream sector over the next five years to help raise production capacity to nine million barrels a day, Oil Minister Abdul Kareem Al Luaibi said.
The country will allocate $18 billion to raise natural gas output and $25 billion to expand refinery capacity, Al Luaibi said at a conference in Basrah yesterday.
Iraq forecasts $600 billion in revenue from the oil expansion, he said. Iraq, Opec's second-largest producer, is boosting output and upgrading energy facilities hobbled by decades of war and economic sanctions.
Production swelled by 24 per cent last year, and Iraq overtook Iran in June to become the biggest producer after Saudi Arabia in Opec. Iraqi output rose six per cent to 3.14 million barrels a day in February, up from 2.97 million barrels the previous month, according to the the Paris-based International Energy Agency.
This was the first time in two months that it exceeded three million barrels a day, mostly as a result of increased tanker exports from Basrah in southern Iraq. Iraq holds the world's fifth-biggest crude reserves.