Iraqi Kurdistan puts on hold DNO's oil procedures

SULAIMANIYA, Iraq, Sept 21 - The authorities of Iraqi Kurdistan said on Monday they were putting on hold for six weeks the oilfield procedures of Norwegian oil exploration company DNO International (DNO.OL).

The Kurdistan Regional Federal government said in a statement on its website that reports out of Norway had done it "unjustifiable and enormous harm" however provided no further details. It demanded DNO correct the damage done to the KRG's credibility.

"All oil exports will certainly discontinue as well as DNO will not be entitled to any type of financial interest in the (Kurdish oil contracts) during the suspension period," Kurdish natural deposits priest Ashti Hawrami said in the statement, which was also published on DNO's website.

Called by telephone while taking a trip overseas, Hawrami declined to specify.

DNO is just one of numerous international firms that has actually signed deals with the KRG to develop the semi-autonomous north Iraqi region's oilfields.

The arrangements are opposed by the federal Iraqi government, which has actually called them illegal, however in a shift Baghdad in June started to permit exports to move from two Kurdish fields.

Among the areas, Tawke, which is creating 40,000 barrels each day to 50,000 bpd, was developed by DNO. The various other, Taq Taq, was developed by Swiss traveler Addax Petroleum, just recently purchased by China's Sinopec, as well as Turkish company Genel Enerji.

DNO said it highly declined a choice by the Oslo Stock Exchange to advertise information related to the sale of treasury shares by the company in October 2008.

It implicated the exchange of breaching its discretion responsibilities by launching the information, triggering the media to publish "speculative, deceptive and wrong details" that likewise hurt DNO's reputation.

"DNO is currently taking into epoxy additives launching lawful activities versus OSE for damages as a result of wilful breach of confidentiality. The insurance claim for damages might be substantial," the firm stated in a statement on its website.

The Oslo bourse declined to comment. "No comment on this tonight. We will certainly review this problem tomorrow," a spokesperson stated.

On Sept 19, the KRG issued a declaration saying it had facilitated DNO's treasury shares deal with the intention of helping DNO to increase the funding needed for its projects in the Kurdish area.

"We want to make it absolutely clear that neither the KRG nor any one of its ministries, authorities, staff members or advisers has actually profited straight or indirectly, through DNO or Genel Enerji, from the transaction or subsequent resale of the shares referred to by OSE," it claimed.

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