Dana Gas suspends production at major Iraqi gasfield after drone 'terror' attack

UAE company working with authorities to enhance security and allow the resumption of production at the Khor Mor plant

A Dana Gas refinery in Iraq's Kurdish region. Wam
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Dana Gas, one of the largest private natural gas companies in the Middle East, has “temporarily” suspended operations at a gas complex in Iraq's Kurdish region after a drone strike that killed four people.

Four workers died and eight others were wounded when the drone struck a condensate storage tank at the Khor Mor complex on Friday, the UAE company said in a filing to the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange on Monday, adding that it was a “terror attack”.

“Although there was very minor damage to the facilities, for the safety of all our staff and the facilities, we have temporarily suspended production and instituted specific procedural changes,” Dana Gas said.

The four killed were all Yemeni citizens, said Peshawa Hawramani, the Iraqi Kurdish regional government's representative.

Dana Gas said it was “fully engaged with the Kurdistan Regional Government and the Federal Government of Iraq at the highest levels in supporting their public commitments that the perpetrators will be brought to justice”.

It is also co-ordinating with Iraqi authorities “to enhance the security and defence measures to allow the resumption of production at the Khor Mor gas facility”.

Khor Mor, one of the major operating fields in the Sulaymaniyah region of Kurdistan, has been the target of similar attacks in the past months.

There has been no claim of responsibility from any group for the attacks, including the latest one.

The field is being developed by the Pearl Consortium, which is led by Dana Gas and Crescent Petroleum with partners OMV of Austria, MOL of Hungary and RWE.

Production started in 2008, sending gas to power stations in the cities of Chemchemal, Bazian and Erbil, making the Kurdish region the first to use gas for electricity in Iraq on such a scale.

By 2018, production had risen by 50 per cent to 452 million standard cubic feet per day, from 305 million standard cfd by the end of 2021, together with 15,000 barrels per day of condensate and more than 1,000 tonnes of liquefied petroleum gas.

To date, all of the gas produced by the field has been used for in-country power generation, providing fuel for more than 80 per cent of the Kurdish region of Iraq.

Friday's strike disrupted gas supply to the region's power plants, resulting in the loss of 2,500 megawatts of electricity, local electricity authorities said.

The UAE has strongly condemned the drone attack on the Khor Mor gasfield.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs affirmed that the Emirates expressed its strong condemnation and denunciation of the attacks aimed at undermining security and stability in Iraq, Wam reported.

The US State Department spokesman Matthew Miller said: “The United States strongly condemns today’s attack on energy infrastructure in the Iraqi Kurdistan Region.”

Updated: April 29, 2024, 8:59 AM