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Qatar May End North Field Moratorium on World Cup Win, HSBC Says

Qatar may have to lift a moratorium on developing the world’s largest natural-gas reservoir, known as the North Field, to generate enough electricity to stage the 2022 World Cup soccer championship, HSBC Holdings Plc said.

“There are likely to be increased power needs due to the influx of labor and later air-conditioning requirement for the new hotels,” HSBC analysts Raj Sinha and John Lomax said in a report dated Dec. 3.

The Persian Gulf sheikhdom, holder of the world’s third-largest gas reserves, bested the U.S., Japan, South Korea and Australia to play host to the world’s most-watched sporting event.

Qatar needs gas to supply its power plants and has been studying the viability of exploiting the North Field since halting development there in 2005. Saad al-Kaabi, director of oil and gas ventures at state-owned Qatar Petroleum, said last year the moratorium wouldn’t be lifted before 2014, if at all.

“Bringing forward capacity additions could encourage the moratorium on gas exploration to be lifted, as additional feedstock is required,” HSBC said.

The North Field contains reserves of about 900 trillion cubic feet.

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