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Iraq Approves $278m Halliburton Deal

Iraq Approves $278m Halliburton Deal

By John Lee.

The Iraqi cabinet has approved a drilling deal with Halliburton value at $278.5 million (324 billion Iraqi dinars).

Reuters reports that under the 30-month contract, Halliburton will drill 30 oil wells in the 8.7-billion-barrel West Qurna-I field, operated by U.S. major ExxonMobil.

Production at the field is currently running at around 360,000 bpd due to problems with low levels of water injection.

(Source: Reuters)

Posted in Oil & Gas0 Comments

Warwick International Opens First Iraq Hotel

Warwick International Opens First Iraq Hotel

By John Lee.

Warwick International Hotels Group (WIH) has opened its portfolio new 300-room Babylon Warwick Hotel in Baghdad.

The company has entered into a contract with Al Ebaa Company to manage the propertly, located on the edge of the Tigris River opposite of the USA Embassy.

According to an announcement from the Groip, the hotel has been fully renovated to meet the international five stars hotel standards to meet the expectations of international travelers.

Facilities include indoor and outdoor Olympic swimming pools, a spa with a Turkish bath, a fitness center, tennis courts, 3 conference rooms with a meeting capacity of up to 750 guests, 6 restaurants and a Cigar bar.

(Source: WIH)

Posted in Industry & Trade, Leisure and Tourism0 Comments

Over 1.8 Million Iraqis Displaced

Over 1.8 Million Iraqis Displaced

From January through 5 October, 2014 the International Organization for Migration (IOM)’s Displacement Tracking Matrix (DTM) identified an estimated 1,814,862 displaced people (302,477 families) in Iraq.

This figure represents an increase of more than 61,000 displaced people since late September.

Ninewa and Anbar remain the governorates of origin for the largest displaced populations, reported as 147,875 families (49%), and 83,979 families (28 per cent) of the total caseload.

These areas are the most directly affected in the current crisis and have experienced continuous displacement. Other areas in the central and central-north governorates also reported large waves of displacement through 2014.

According to an IOM Flash Report on Displacement in Anbar to be released later today, the recent clashes between armed groups and government forces have caused additional displacement in Anbar governorate, mainly originating from the district of Heet.

The heavy fighting in Heet City triggered the displacement of 3,708 families (19,098 individuals), including 525 families who had been previously displaced to Heet and have now suffered a second displacement. Most of the displacement was to other areas of the governorate, while some families fled to Kerbala and Baghdad.

The Kurdistan Region of Iraq now hosts 47 per cent of all IDPs – 142,380 families or an estimated 854,280 individuals. The governorate of Dahuk, together with the disputed districts of Al-Shikhan and Akre, host the largest displaced population – nearly 550,000 individuals or 30 per cent of the total displaced population.

In total, seven of Iraq’s 18 governorates have observed displacement from within and across governorate borders. Salah Al-Din and Ninewa governorates have experienced significant population losses.

IOM Iraq Chief of Mission Thomas Lothar Weiss said:

In the face of massive displacement, IOM continues to monitor current population movements in cooperation with government authorities in order to guide humanitarian response. We are especially concerned about the condition of displaced families as the winter approaches.

“IOM is rapidly distributing winterization kits to displaced families, but the need is greater than the available supply.”

In the past week IOM began distribution of some 4,150 full winterization kits across 10 governorates. Each kit contains a kerosene heater, carpet, thick blankets, plastic sheeting, mattresses, pillows, towels, kitchen set, hygiene kit, floor mat, kerosene stove, and plastic cabinet. IOM has distributed over 41,000 family non-food relief item (NFI) kits since the beginning of this year.

(Source: IOM)

Posted in Security0 Comments

Iraq Seeks to Increase Electricity Imports

Iraq Seeks to Increase Electricity Imports

By John Lee.

Iraq’s new Minister of Electricity, Qasim Mohammad Abid Hammadi al-Fahadawi [Qassim al-Fahdawi] (pictured), is to travel to Iran on Tuesday to hold talks on electricity imports.

At a meeting with his Iranian counterpart, Hamid Chitchian, the Minister will also discuss the expansion of economic ties between Tehran and Baghdad.

In 2013, the two sides agreed to increase electricity exports from Iran to Iraq by 500 megawatts.

Tasnim News Agency reports that Iranian companies have so far completed 10 projects in Iraq in the area of water and electricity, and another 27 projects valued at $1.245 billion (1.45 trillion Iraqi dinars) are still in progress.

(Source: Tasnim News Agency)

Posted in Oil & Gas, Public Works0 Comments

Corruption Plagues Iraqi TV, Film Industry

Corruption Plagues Iraqi TV, Film Industry

By Shukur Khilkhal for Al-Monitor. Any opinions expressed are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.

Each year, Arab TV stations compete to buy and broadcast dramatic productions from Egypt, Syria and Gulf counties. Yet, there is no demand for Iraqi drama, which is limited to local TV channels.

It is a bitter reality for the Iraqi TV and film industry, over which concerned parties are in constant disagreement.

The dilemma is complex enough to make it hard to determine the exact problem. The industry’s players blame each other for its deterioration and loss of identity, and the issue has been widely discussed in the media.

Some actors blame the producers and writers, while the writers hold the producers responsible and others blame the film directors. As for the directors, they distance themselves from this responsibility, and believe that the rest of the key parties in the TV and film industry should be held responsible for its deterioration.

During a seminar on the condition of Iraqi drama held in Damascus March 20, 2010, film director Hassan Hosni identified six reasons for the deterioration of Iraqi TV and film production that did not include directing.

Although everyone agrees that poor production is a major problem, the Al-Iraqiya TV channel, the biggest producer of Iraqi drama, seems indifferent to what is being said. In fact, it celebrates what has been achieved so far.

A number of major artists have found themselves forced to withdraw from the scene in protest, to boycott the current industry. Others preferred to emigrate and some prominent screenwriters, such as Farooq Mohammed, Hamed al-Maliki and Ahmed Hatef, stopped writing. Maliki told Al-Monitor that he has been living off his personal savings since he made this decision.

These figures’ withdrawal from the scene is not contributing to resolving the problem, but may instead exacerbate it by leaving only beginners and inexperienced people.

Posted in Security, Telecoms/Comms0 Comments

Petrofac Unaffected by Iraq Problems

Petrofac Unaffected by Iraq Problems

By John Lee.

Oil and gas service provided Petrofac has said that the security problems in Iraq have had “no significant impact” on its operations.

In its Interim Management Statement, the company said:

Our operations in Iraq are south and east of Baghdad and represent less than 5% of the Group’s expected revenues for 2014.

“While we continue to monitor events closely, there has been no significant impact on our current operations to date.

(Source: Petrofac)

Posted in Oil & Gas, Security0 Comments

Iraq Stock Market Report

Iraq Stock Market Report

Advertising Feature

Rabee Securities Iraq Stock Exchange (ISX) market report (week ending: 16th October 2014).

Note: ISX announced that they will suspend the trading sessions for one week to transfer the data and complete the preparations to switch from Horizon to X-Stream trading system. The last trading session using the Horizon system was on October 16, 2014 (Thursday). ISX will resume the trading session on October 26, 2014 (Sunday).

Please click here to download a table of listed companies and their associated ticker codes.

The RSISX index ended the week at ID1,487 (-1.5%)/ $1,600 (-1.5%) (weekly change) (-20.3% and -19.4% YTD change, respectively). The number of week traded shares was 41.6bn and the weekly trading volume was IQD36.3bn ($30.1mn).

ScreenHunter_1113 Oct. 17 20.34


ISX Company Announcements

  • According to the ISC announcement, CBI decided to ban United Bank of Iraq (BUND) from publishing letters of guarantees until they pay the amounts that was mentioned in CBI announcement published on September 28, 2014 (Ref. # 9/2/14779) related with the requirements that BUND should do for its beneficiaries.
  • Babylon Hotel (HBAY) made a 25 years deal with Al-Ibaa’ Co. for Tourism and Hospitality Services and with their partner Warwick International Hotels. (Please refer to our Daily published on Thursday (Oct.16) for the details of the deal). HBAY will hold its AGM* on Oct. 18, 2014 to discuss and approve 2013 annual financial results and to cover the accumulated deficit by increasing its capital through 170% rights issue. ISX suspended trading of HBAY starting on Oct. 12, 2014.
  • Karbala Hotels (HKAR) will hold its AGM* on Oct. 27, 2014 to discuss and approve 2013 annual financial results, covering the accumulated deficit, increasing its capital through 100% rights issue and electing new board members.
  • Middle East for Prod. Fish (AMEF) will hold its AGM* on Oct. 26, 2014 to discuss and approve 2013 annual financial results. ISX will suspend trading of AMEF starting on Oct. 19, 2014.
  • Babylon Bank (BBAY) resumed trading on Oct. 16, 2014 after fulfilling ISC’s disclosure requirements.
  • ISC has decided to suspend the trading of the following companies starting on Oct. 15, 2014 for their failure of disclosing 6M2014 financial results: Babylon Bank (BBAY), Commercial Bank of Iraq (BCOI), Economy Bank for Investment (BEFI), Electronic Industries (IELI), Iraqi for General Transp. (SIGT), Baghdad Motor Cars Servicing (SBMC), Baghdad Passengers Transport (SBPT) and Al-Khair for Financial Inv. (VKHF)
  • Gulf Insurance & Reinsurance (NGIR) decided to postpone its AGM* for an unknown date due to coincide it with the national holiday of Eid Al- Adhha. ISX suspended trading of NGIR starting Oct. 12, 2014.
  • National Chemical Industries (INCP) held its AGM* on Oct. 16, 2014 to discuss and approve 2013 annual financial results. ISX suspended trading of INCP starting on Oct. 12, 2014.

Posted in Investment0 Comments

Lukoil discusses Investment in Iraq

Lukoil discusses Investment in Iraq

By John Lee.

Lukoil President Vagit Alekperov has said that his company has invested $6 billion dollars so far on operations in Iraq.

At a meeting with Iraqi Oil Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi [Adil Abd al-Mahdi] in Baghdad, Alekperov said:

“Lukoil is now working on geological exploration projects with other foreign companies in the 10th exploratory area … I believe the appropriate circumstances were made for investing in Iraq that guarantees the rights of the investors.”

First oil was produced from Lukoil’s West Qurna in March. The company, Russia’s largest private oil company, signed a contract revision in June to build two 75-mile pipelines and associated infrastructure.

(Sources: UPI, Ministry of Oil)

Posted in Oil & Gas0 Comments

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