Shares in Aberdeen group Ramco Energy soared by more than 40% at one stage yesterday after it confirmed that plans for a joint venture in Iraq had just one hurdle left to jump.
The shares ended the day up 25.4% at 39.5p.
Mesopotamia Petroleum Company (MPC), in which Ramco holds a 32.7% interest, is planning the joint venture with state-owned Iraq Drilling Company (IDC).
MPC would supply drilling equipment and services to allow the Iraqis to increase oil production.
It is hoped the joint venture will be up and running by next year.
Representatives of MPC have just returned from attending the Iraq Energy Expo and Conference in Baghdad.
Idriss al Yassiri, director general of IDC, said at the conference that the text of the joint venture agreement between IDC and MPC had been agreed by all parties and the only remaining condition was final approval by the government of Iraq.
Steve Remp, chairman of both MPC and Ramco, said: “It was an honour to attend the conference in Baghdad and for Pete Redman, MPC’s deputy chairman, and I to be introduced to the conference by the director general of IDC. We also had the benefit of meeting other leading figures from the Iraqi oil ministry, who all confirmed their interest in an early start to the joint venture.
“While significant challenges remain in concluding formal agreements and arrangements for operating in Iraq, the current low oil price environment produces an enormous incentive and urgency to commence operations to help increase Iraqi oil production. Our joint venture with IDC is all about Iraq maintaining sovereignty over its natural resources while having access to the latest in drilling technology and management practices.”