Petronas preparing for drilling in Garraf

Petronas Malaysia is gearing up for production at Garraf oilfield, after disgruntled tribal leaders tried to extract illicit payments in exchange for their permission to drill.

BAGHDAD - Petronas Malaysia will start work on the Garraf oilfield by year’s end, beginning with modest production levels of 50,000 barrels per day (bpd) and gradually increasing output to 230,000 bpd by 2015, according to company officials.

Malaysia’s state-run oil firm had suffered a setback in southern Iraq, as local tribesmen were refusing to cede their ancestral lands peacefully without a cash payment from Petronas. The alleged extortion drew condemnation from the Iraqi Oil Ministry, and the tribal sheiks have since denied any threat of violence, saying that they merely approached the company with a request.

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