BAGHDAD (WKOW) -- It's common knowledge that Iraq has a vast oil supply, but it seems their reserves are even larger than first thought. In fact, Iraq's oil ministry says the country's oil reserves are significantly higher than current estimates of 115 billion barrels.
Oil Ministry spokesman Assem Jihad said Thursday the ministry would announce the revision, which he described as "big," on Oct. 4. He did not provide additional details, including on what basis the revision would be made.
The announcement comes nearly two years after Iraq resumed oil exploration. For years, such efforts were ignored due to war, U.S. sanctions and the expulsion of foreign firms from the country. Many oil experts believe the largely unexplored western region holds large, undiscovered, reserves.
Iraq last year awarded 12 oil contracts to international oil companies, and aims to raise output to 12 million barrels per day by 2017 -- a level many see as overly optimistic.