Iraq, China open major oil field
DATE:2009-3-14  FROM:  AUTHOR:  DOWN:3079

KUT, Iraq (AFP) – Chinese engineers have inaugurated an Iraqi oil field, the first major oil development deal secured by a foreign firm since the 2003 fall of Saddam Hussein, officials said on Thursday.

The project, which follows the signing of a three-billon-dollar contract late last year, revives a deal signed in 1997 that granted China exploration rights to Al-Ahdab oil field in central Iraq.

"This project will provide a number of jobs and opportunities for investment," Oil Minister Hussein al-Shahristani said at a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Wednesday, quoted in an official statement.

"It will provide the province with electricity and power to operate the power station in Zurbadiyah and to help contribute to development and prosperity," he said.

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