Volkswagen announces $650 million investment in Argentina plant

Business-friendly President Mauricio Macri has encouraged foreign investment especially after his center-right coalition’s wins in last month’s midterm elections. (Reuters)
Updated 11 November 2017
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Volkswagen announces $650 million investment in Argentina plant

BUENO AIRES: German automaker Volkswagen on Friday announced a plan to invest $650 million in an Argentina plant where it will manufacture a new sport-utility vehicle, according to a statement released by the government.
Business-friendly President Mauricio Macri, who ushered Argentina out of recession in 2016, has encouraged foreign investment especially after his center-right coalition’s wins in last month’s midterm elections.
Production of the SUV is anticipated to begin in 2020.
In a televised statement Macri noted that one year ago the government, companies and unions agreed to produce on million cars per year.
The president stressed that in 2017 Argentina has sold more than 780,000 cars, with record sales of trucks “which means production is moving, construction is moving.”
Automotive factories produced nearly 393,650 units from January to October, according to Argentina’s Association of Automotive Factories, 2.1 percent more than in the same period in 2016.
In those 10 months the sector commercialized 714,864 vehicles with a year-on-year increase of 21.8 percent in total sales, the group said.


Kuwait Energy starts producing natural gas from field in southern Iraq

Updated 25 April 2018
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Kuwait Energy starts producing natural gas from field in southern Iraq

BASRA: Kuwait Energy PLC started producing natural gas from Siba on Wednesday, the first gas field to be brought on stream in the south of Iraq, an Iraqi oil executive said.
Siba began producing gas at an initial rate of 25 million cubic feet a day (mcf/d), which should rise gradually to 100 mcf/d by the end of the year, said Kareem Abd Oda, the director general of the joint venture established by Iraq and Kuwait Energy to develop the field.
Siba, south of the city of Basra, is producing natural gas and gas condensates, he added.
The other hydrocarbon reservoirs of southern Iraq that are already in operation produce natural gas alongside crude oil.
The gas extracted in several of these fields is burnt off instead of being captured, as the country lacks the capacity to process it into fuel for local consumption or exports.
Energy-rich Iraq is looking to boost oil and gas production with joint ventures with Kuwaiti, Turkish and Egyptian firms, as it rebuilds its economy following years of turmoil, including the takeover of large parts of the country by Daesh in 2014.
The semi-autonomous Kurdistan Regional Government has started producing natural gas from fields in northern Iraq.
Iraq hopes by 2021 to end gas flaring, which costs nearly $2.5 billion in lost revenue for the government and would be sufficient to meet most of its unmet needs for gas-based power generation, according to the World Bank.
Iraq holds on Thursday an auction of oil and gas exploration contracts in 11 blocks alongside the border with Iran and Kuwait and in offshore Gulf waters. The new contracts set a time limit for companies to end gas flaring from oilfields they develop.
Iraq is the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries’ second-largest producer after Saudi Arabia.
Companies including BP, Exxon Mobil, Eni , Total, Royal Dutch Shell and Lukoil helped Iraq expand production in the past decade by more than 2.5 million barrels per day (bpd) to about 4.7 million bpd.
Iraq’s crude exports from its southern region on the Gulf have averaged 3.5 million bpd so far in April, two oil executives told Reuters on Wednesday.
That is higher than the March average of 3.45 million bpd.