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Kuwait Oil Capacity Additions Smaller, Slower Than Hoped

Kuwait Oil Capacity Additions Smaller, Slower Than Hoped

KOC plans to develop the Raqta project on Kuwait’s northern border with Iraq have faced several setbacks.

Kuwait Oil Company (KOC) expects to produce far less heavy crude from the Ratqa field and less light oil from the Jurassic field by 2020 than originally hoped, the head of the state run oil company said on Wednesday.

Exxon Mobil and KOC said they could produce up to 700,000 bpd of heavy oil from the Lower Fars reservoir of the Ratqa field by 2020 when they reached a preliminary deal in 2007, later abandoned, to develop it jointly.

KOC plans to develop the project on Kuwait’s northern border with Iraq have faced several setbacks since, while the tricky Jurassic gas field looks set to produce less light oil by the end of the decade than had been hoped for by 2015.

“We are expecting to produce 60,000 barrels of heavy oil per day from Ratqa (at start up) and then build up to 120,000 bpd by 2020, and 300,000 bpd for the Jurassic,” KOC chief Hashim S. Hashim said in response to a question about how much the two projects would produce by 2020.

During a public question and answer session held by KOC on Twitter, he did not answer questions on whether Kuwait would be able to meet its overall target of reaching an oil production capacity of four million bpd by 2020, about one million bpd above its current production.

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, original development plans for Jurassic were to produce 350,000 bpd of light oil, or condensate, by 2015.

It is not clear whether the condensate that is expected to be extracted from the Jurassic gas field forms part of the overall oil capacity target.

Slow progress on the technically challenging field presents another supply worry for a country hoping to quadruple its gas output by 2030, especially after shelving a major joint project with Saudi Arabia earlier this year.

Kuwait’s oil production comes mainly from a few mature fields, dominated by the huge Burgan field in the south of the country.


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