Iraq said Wednesday it had finished work on 10 new oil refineries, which will boost the country's oil production by 100,000 barrels a day.
The refineries, spread over several provinces, can each produce 10,000 barrels a day and will be inaugurated in the coming days, a government spokesman said, quoted by the weekly newspaper Al-Ilam.
The spokesman said the construction was done by the interior ministry and an Iraqi group for military industrialization and that the facilities have all been tested.
President Saddam Hussein ordered construction of the 10 refineries in June, saying they were necessary to provide demand in Iraq, estimated at about 510,000 barrels a day
Iraq already has four large oil refineries, including one in the southern city of Basra, which resumed production just two months after being hit by US and British air raids in December 1998.
Baghdad has been under sanctions since 1990 but since 1996 has been allowed to export limited amounts of oil under strict UN supervision in exchange for food, medical supplies and other necessities.
The country's oil production reached three million barrels a day in August, 630,000 barrels more than the month before and the highest level since the 1991 Gulf War, according to the Middle East Economic Survey, a specialist newsletter.—AFP
©--Agence France Presse.
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