Gulf Keystone steps up crude output as it exports to Turkey

Suzie Neuwirth
AIM-LISTED oil and gas explorer Gulf Keystone Petroleum (GKP) yesterday showed how much progress it has made in developing the Shaikan oil field in Kurdistan, as it steps up its crude oil exports.

The firm began exporting crude oil from the Shaikan field in December. A three-year court battle over ownership of the field ended in GKP’s favour in September.

It confirmed yesterday that it is exporting part of its production to Turkey. Between 198,300 barrels and 215,000 barrels of Shaikan crude were trucked to Turkey in December.

A second tender is underway for two more cargoes of a similar size, which are expected to be loaded later this month and during February.

“This is an important milestone as exporting the crude opens up another market in addition to local sales,” said Will Forbes, analyst at Edison Investment Research.

“Finding a route to market for Shaikan production is critical to provide a larger market and enable the company to work towards funding its expansion towards 100,000 barrels per day.”

GKP is looking to list on the FTSE 250 index now the court case has been resolved, which is expected to happen at the March reshuffle.

Shares rose 0.3 per cent.