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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

LUKoil Presses UN

KOGALYM, Western Siberia -- LUKoil is seeking approval from the United Nations to start initial exploration of the West Qurna-2 oil field in southern Iraq, which is expected to produce 667.3 million metric tons of crude.

LUKoil has drafted an $80 million project blueprint with initial investments of $20 million for exploration and the drilling of two appraisal wells, which are partly restricted by the sanctions imposed on Iraq, first vice president Ravil Maganov said Tuesday.

Iraqi Prime Minister Tariq Aziz is expected to visit Moscow on July 7-8, while some high-ranking Baghdad officials have invited Fuel and Energy Minister Viktor Kalyuzhny to visit Iraq.

LUKoil has a 52.5 percent stake in the project, which was set up in 1997, while Iraq's state-owned oil projects public company SCOP has 25 percent. The rest is equally split between Russian firms Zarubezhneft and Mashinoimport.