Al mashriq - The Levant

Iraq Petroleum Company

Notes: (gathered on the net)

Then in the 1930s the Iraq Petroleum Company (IPC) built a pipeline through northern Jordan, creating the pumping station settlements of Ruwayshid and Safawi. (Arid Land Resources and their Management)

The Iraq Petroleum Company (IPC) held a concession for Dubai from 1937 to 1961. (Dubai oil)

In 1973 the Lebanese government had nationalized the oil refinery at Tripoli, formerly owned by the Iraq Petroleum Company (IPC). But unlike many Third World nationalizations, this move did not reflect any change in the country's fundamentally capitalist approach to business in general and foreign investment in particular. It was administratively necessary after Baghdad had nationalizated the much more important IPC installations within Iraq itself and after Syria had taken over IPC's trans-Syrian pipeline and terminal at Baniyas, Syria. IPC disputed the Tripoli takeover, and the Lebanese government offered compensation. The matter was referred to arbitration but remained unresolved in the late 1980s.

The Tripoli Oil Installation, as the new state concern was called, comprised a 35,000 barrel per day (bpd) refinery and a small spur of the old IPC pipeline through Syria. Until 1976 Iraqi crude continued to reach Tripoli via the refinery and was used primarily to meet domestic oil requirements. Normally, the refinery met about one-third of the country's gasoline requirements and about half of its other fuel needs. But in 1976, the Iraqis ceased pumping crude to the main Syrian export terminal at Baniyas and thus halted direct supplies to Lebanon. With the start of the Iran-Iraq War in September 1980, the pipeline was reactivated. Although Lebanon reached an agreement with Baghdad in November 1981 to reactivate the Tripoli spur, the deal collapsed when Syria announced the following April that it would not allow Iraq to use the pipeline. The Iraqis agreed, instead, to pipe 3,000 bpd of crude to Dortyol in Turkey and then ship it to Tripoli by tanker. Heavy fighting between rival Palestinian groups in late 1983 badly damaged the refinery. It was not until August 1984 that repairs were completed and production was resumed at an initial rate of 20,000 bpd. Iraq again agreed to provide crude by tanker, and between 1984 and 1987 the refinery ran on varying mixtures of Iraqi and Saudi crude.

Source: Federal Research Division - Library of Congress (Edited by Thomas Collelo, December 1987) (

The Henson and Associates Collection of Middle East Larger Foraminifera - This is a very large collection (approximately 10,000 specimens), originally the reference collection of the former Iraq Petroleum Company.

Clive Jones, Collections Manager, Department of Palaeontology, The Natural History Museum

World Oil Market and Oil Price Chronologies: 1970 - 1997

The Kirkuk field, originally brought online by the Iraqi Petroleum Company (IPC) in 1934, still forms the basis for northern Iraqi oil production. Kirkuk has over 10 billion barrels of remaining proven oil reserves. The Jambur, Bai Hassan, and Khabbaz fields are the only other currently- producing oil fields in northern Iraq. While Iraq's northern oil industry remained relatively unscathed during the Iran-Iraq War, an estimated 60% of Northern Oil Company's (NOC) facilities in northern and central Iraq were damaged in the Gulf War. Also, post-1991 fighting between Kurdish and Iraqi forces in northern Iraq resulted in temporary sabotage of the Kirkuk field's facilities. In 1996, production capacity in northern and central Iraq was estimated at between 0.7-1 MMBD, down from around 1.2 MMBD before the Gulf War.


Despite the recent increase in exploration activity, only about 36% of the country's estimated 800 potential oil and gas structures have been drilled. No major new oil reserves have been discovered since around 1992. Without significant new discoveries in the next few years, Syrian and foreign oil company officials (including Shell, the main foreign operator) believe that the country could become a net oil importer as early as 2005. The last time Syria was a net oil importer was in 1987 (Syria bought from Iraq until April 1982, when it switched to Iran as an ally and oil supplier and closed the 1.1-1.4 million-bbl/d-capacity IPC pipeline from Kirkuk to Banias).

SCOT also is in charge of Syria's pipelines. Main internal pipelines are: 1) a 250,000 bbl/d export pipeline from SPC's northeastern fields to the Tartous terminal with a connection to the Homs refinery; 2) a 500,000 tons/year refined products pipeline system linking Homs refinery to Damascus, Aleppo, and Latakia; 3) a 100,000 bbl/d spur line from al-Thayyem and other fields to the T-2 pumping station on the old Iraqi Petroleum Company (IPC) pipeline; 4) a spur line from the al-Ashara and al-Ward fields to the T-2 pumping station. Meanwhile, the recent thaw in relations between Iraq and Syria has raised speculation regarding the possibility of Syria allowing Iraq to export oil once again through the IPC pipeline. It is estimated that a significant amount of time and money would be necessary to make the pipeline fully functional. Furthermore, the United Nations would have to approve any Iraq oil exports through Syria (currently, only two outlets for Iraqi crude exports -- Ceyhan, Turkey and Mina al-Bakr, Iraq -- are approved under the U.N. "food-for-oil" deal).


The first oil concession in the Sultanate of Oman was granted as long ago as 1925, but it was not until 1954 that a serious search for oil was started by the Iraq Petroleum Company operating from its base at Duqm on the south coast. Many abortive wells were sunk including at Fahud, but oil in commercial quantities was not discovered, and the consortium abandoned the attempt. However, Shell, a member of the group, formed another consortium with Compagnie Francaise des Petroles and Partex and continued the exploration. lii 1964 oil was discovered at Fahud on the other side of a faultline from the location where IPC had sunk a dry welt and this, with smaller oilfields at Natih and Yibal, made the commercial production of oil possible, with the first shipment being exported in 1967.