As of July 2018, the Ministry of Oil for Iraq has reported a 0.6% increase in oil exportation. The Ministry is attempting to increase the production and sale of gas and oil by outsourcing to local national companies rather than foreign ones; they claim that doing so has significantly reduced costs. Last week the Ministry of Oil released a statement that partially read, “The Ministry of Oil announced an increase in the oil exports and revenues for last July as compared to last June, according to preliminary figures released by the Iraqi Oil Marketing Company (SOMO).”

The Ministry of Oil spokesman, Assim Jihad, declared that the oil exportation from Iraq’s southern and central territories have totaled around 109,847,268 barrels of oil this year. The revenue from that exportation has added up to $7,597,348,000. He went on to inform that the average price of a barrel was close to $70 with a current rate of 3.543 million barrels per day. Assim Jihad stated that, “The Ministry has adopted this monthly endeavor due to its belief in informing the people of the exports and revenues which have been obtained.”

Iraq’s Minister of Oil has appointed local national businesses to implement measures geared towards expanding the development of existing oil fields and refineries. The Ministry’s statement touched on this saying that, “The Minister of Oil, Jabbar al-Luaibi, said that he has directed the Dhi Qar Oil Company, Iraqi Drilling Company, Oil Projects and other relevant parties to develop the Nasiriyah oil well in the Dhi Qar province through national efforts.” It added that ideally, Iraqi oil businesses would possess the capability to push the future development and production of existing facilities “with less expenditure and cost.”

The Ministry of Oil intends to develop the southern fields production capabilities upwards of 200,000 barrels per day by the end of the year by drilling another well. The Ministry of Oil intends to invest $140 million into similar projects out of its own budget rather than through the Ministry of Finance “so as to not burden the federal budget with development costs due to economic conditions,” according to the Minister of Oil, Jabbar al-Luaibi.

Featured image: An Iraqi worker operates valves in Nihran Bin Omar field north of Basra, Iraq. Emerging from a grueling war with the Islamic State group for more than three years, Iraq plans to open more of its untapped oil and gas resources to foreign developers to boost reserves and to increase sorely needed revenues for post-war construction by offering rights to explore and develop hydrocarbon-rich areas. | AP Photo/ Nabil al-Jurani, File