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Iraq to sign gas deal with US firm for southern field

Iraq will on Monday sign a memorandum of understanding with American energy company Orion to tap gas. (REUTERS)
BAGHDAD: Iraq will on Monday sign a memorandum of understanding with American energy company Orion to tap gas at an oil field in the south of the country, the petroleum ministry said.
The Nahr Bin Omar field, situated in the hydrocarbon-rich Basra province, is currently producing 40,000 barrels of oil a day, but only a small part of the gas from the field is being exploited.
Iraq is looking to tap its gas deposits to help overcome severe electricity shortfalls in the country of some 35 million people.
Baghdad has been in talks with American giant Exxon and Chinese firms over developing oil production at the field.
Analyst Ruba Husari said as those talks drag on the Iraqi authorities are looking to speed up gas exploitation for electricity production.

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