By John Lee.
Iraq's giant oil field West Qurna 2, with a minimum 14 billion barrels of recoverable reserves, began production on Saturday as Lukoil opened spigots to put 140,000 barrels a day onto the market.
By the end of the year the field is set to produce 400,000 bpd, putting Iraq on track for its production target for this year of 4 million bpd.
If fully developed, West Qurna 2 could produce 1.2 million bpd for 20 years and the start of production at the field was described as "strategically important" by Lukoil chief executive Vagit Alekperov (pictured.)
Lukoil have a 75% stake in the operation with the remainder owned by Iraq's South Oil Company.
Some analysts have noted how Iraq's rising production could spark tensions with OPEC, as the country is now already moving outside of OPEC production quotas, set to keep prices stable.
(Source: Al Arabiya)
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