Iraq has invited international consultancy firms to tender for a contract to help manage its multi billion-dollar oilfield water injection projects, a senior oil official said. The water injection scheme aims to help raise extraction rates and maintain reservoir pressure to overcome declines in production at fields such as West Qurna, Majnoon, Zubair and Rumaila.
"We have already sent letters to specific consultancy services companies and we expect to receive their offers soon," Dhiya Jafaar, head of the state-run South Oil Co., told Reuters.
"The winning company will help us to manage implementing the water injection project."
Iraq's oil minister Abdul-Kareem Luaibi said last week that several firms had been shortlisted.
The country is pushing to upgrade outdated infrastructure and become one of the world's biggest oil sources after years of ruinous war and sanctions.
U.S. oil major ExxonMobil had been chosen from among oil companies that won development contracts for southern oilfields to take the lead in coordinating initial studies for the project.
But the company was removed in February after it signed exploration deals with the government of Iraq's autonomous Kurdish region, angering the central government in Baghdad, which has labelled the deals illegal.
Jafaar said the removal of Exxon from leadership of the project was not connected with the Kurdish deals and he blamed poor coordination and the project economics submitted by Exxon.