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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Rosneft, Tatneft Can Bid for Iraq Rights

Iraq, holder of the world's third-largest crude reserves, selected nine companies Wednesday as potential bidders in a second auction round for oil development rights, including Rosneft and Tatneft.

The Iraqi Oil Ministry said in a statement that it was offering 11 oil and gas fields in the second round, and it will inform the prequalified bidders of the next steps in the process. A total of 38 companies sought to take part in the round.

The country, aiming to bring back foreign investors after six years of conflict and prior sanctions destroyed infrastructure, is running two bidding rounds for field development rights. Iraq qualified 35 international oil firms to make offers in the first round and aims to award contracts by June.

LUKoil participated in the earlier round and has expressed interest in two major fields, West Qurna and Rumaila. The company has lobbied Iraqi officials to revive a deal for West Qurna that it signed while Saddam Hussein was in power.

(Bloomberg, MT)