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Image courtesy of Gulf Keystone.

Gulf Keystone Petroleum said its Shaikan field in northern Iraq is on target to achieve 40,000 gross barrels of oil per day of production by the end of the year.

Shaikan, the company’s key producing asset, currently has stable production levels averaging averaging 23,000 gross bopd from three wells at PF-1 and two wells at PF-2.

Work to connect the Shaikan-7 and Shaikan-8 wells to PF-1 is ongoing.

Trenching work has been completed on the 9 mile long connection between the Shaikan-10 well and PF-2 and the flowlines are currently being laid.

Gulf Keystone had warned in August that political unrest in the Kurdish region of Iraq could have delayed Shaikan hitting the 40,000 bopd milestone.

The company has an ultimate production capacity target of 100,000 bopd.

About 4.7 million gross barrels of Shaikan crude oil have been sold to the international market since export sales began from the port of Dortyol in January 2014.

Bermuda-based Gulf Keystone will also receive an initial export payment of $75 million later this month from the Kurdistan Regional Government.

The payment is the first in a series of regularly scheduled export payments contingent on Gulf boosting its output in the Kurdish region, Upstream said.

Gulf Keystone operates Shaikan on a 75 percent interest.

Hungary’s MOL holding a 20 percent stake and Pennsylvania-based Texas Keystone holding a 5 percent stake.