Dana Gas Still Waiting for $1.98 Billion in Iraq Kurds Dispute

  • `We don't expect them to pay all in one go': CEO Allman-Ward
  • Shares traded in Abu Dhabi jumped 15% after award announced

Dana Gas PJSC is still waiting for payment of the $1.98 billion that it and two other energy companies were awarded in a dispute over development rights at two oil and gas fields within Iraq’s self-governing Kurdish region.

The London Court of International Arbitration made the award on Nov. 29, saying the KRG had 28 days to pay Dana, Crescent Petroleum and Pearl Petroleum Co. The case sent Dana Gas shares soaring 15 percent, and centered upon the group’s claim to develop and produce natural gas and oil in part of northern Iraq, an arrangement the KRG had disputed. The KRG said at the time the ruling was a partial award that does not finally determine all issues in the arbitration.

“We don’t expect them to pay all in one go,” Chief Executive Officer Patrick Allman-Ward said on the sidelines of a conference in Abu Dhabi. Dana Gas, based in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates, is open to getting paid over time, he said.

The shares dropped 2 percent on Tuesday to 0.5 dirham. They closed at 0.47 dirham on Nov. 29 after the award was announced.

Dana Gas, which operates mostly in Egypt and Iraq, will give more details of its agreement on a separate arbitration case with RWE AG’s trading unit on Feb. 14, when 2015 earnings results are scheduled, Allman-Ward said. The settlement announced in November brought arbitration between the two companies to a close, and was conditioned on details not being released immediately, Allman-Ward said.

Dana Gas is making progress in Egypt, where production is now about 34,000 barrels of oil equivalent a day, compared with about 30,000 barrels at the low point last year, Allman-Ward said. The Balsam-1 well added to output in November followed by Balsam-2 in December. Balsam-3 will start mid-year, he said.

“We’ll continue to drill,” Allman-Ward said. “We’ve got a number of wells that we’ve recently completed.”

The company’s total output averaged 60,800 barrels of oil equivalent a day as of the end of the third quarter, with Egypt contributing 32,144 barrels of oil equivalent a day, according to the company. At the same time, Egypt owed the company $252 million in trade receivables.

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