Iraq has signed a deal with Russia's LUKoil, and Inpex Corp of Japan, to explore the 5,500-square-kilometer (2,100 square mile) Block 10 in Muthanna and Dhi Qar province.
Under the contract, the two firms must invest at least $100 million and will be paid $5.99 for each barrel of oil equivalent it finds.
"This contract represents the resumption of exploration work which stopped in the 1970s," said Abdul Mahdi Al Ameedi, director of the oil ministry’s Petroleum Contracts and Licensing Directorate (PCLD). "We hope it will result in added reserves of oil, which is important for Iraq."
Lukoil and Inpex won the contract in the 4th round energy auction held in May.
(Sources: Middle East Online, NINA)