No pullout by oil majors investing in Kuwait's northern oilfields: official
US oil majors have not pulled out of a seven-billion-dollar investment project to develop Kuwait's northern oilfields, a senior oil official here said Wednesday, November 21.
"No international company has withdrawn from 'Project Kuwait'," the official, speaking on condition on anonymity, told AFP. Al-Qabas newspaper reported Tuesday that four US oil companies that had prequalified for the project had decided to withdraw from the venture. But the official said the report was misinformed and referred only to a construction tender with Kuwait Oil Company (KOC).
"Project Kuwait" aims at doubling to 900,000 barrels the daily production of four oilfields close to the borders with Iraq. Kuwait has pre-qualified nine operator and 17 non-operator foreign companies for the project. The operators were named as Shell, ExxonMobil, BP Amoco, ENI, TotalFinaElf, Chevron, Texaco, Conoco and Phillips. Last February, it sent Initial Process Protocols to pre-qualified oil companies and in March gave them access to specialized oil data for the development of northern oilfields.
Kuwaiti lawmakers have voiced strong opposition to the project and expressed concern that it would involve surrendering Kuwait's wealth into foreign hands. A number of MPs have insisted that Kuwait does not even need the project because it has a surplus in oil output capacity. Oil Minister Adel Al-Sebeih has repeatedly said the government was committed to seeking clearance from parliament before taking any measures. —(AFP, Kuwait City)
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