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Iraq's Gharraf oil field restarts at production rate of 50,000 b/d: Japex

Tokyo — Iraq's Gharraf oil field has restarted production at a rate of 50,000 b/d after output was suspended in mid-March as part of measures to contain the coronavirus pandemic, a Japan Petroleum Exploration spokesman told S&P Global Platts July 22.

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Production was restarted July 21 after Malaysia's Petronas, the operator of the field in southern Iraq, dispatched personnel to the oil field in southern Iraq in mid-June, according to the Japex spokesman.

Platts first reported the start of preparatory works for restarting Gharraf oil output on July 20.

News of the Gharraf oil field restart came to light after OPEC+ members on July 15 pared back their production cut commitment. The 23-country coalition enacted a 9.7 million b/d output cut accord in May in response to the coronavirus crisis and will roll the deal back to 7.7 million b/d in August through to the end of the year, maintaining the terms of the agreement laid out in April.

Production at the Gharraf oil field was suspended on March 16 after Baghdad closed all airports as part of its measures to contain the coronavirus pandemic.

The field produced an average of 75,000 b/d over January-March, the Japex spokesman said July 20.

The Gharraf field started production in August 2013 under a technical service contract with Iraq's South Oil Co. The consortium consists of Petronas with a 45% stake, Japex Garraf with 30% and North Oil Co. with 25%. Japex holds a 55% stake in Japex Garraf with state-owned Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corp. holding 35% and Mitsubishi 10%.