The ministry didn't disclose any more details about the talks.
ExxonMobil couldn't be immediately reached for comment.
Other partners in West Qurna 1 are:
- PetroChina (32.7%)
- ITOCHU Corp. (19.6%)
- Indonesia's Pertamina (10%)
- Iraq's Oil Exploration Co. (5%)
The withdrawal took place while ExxonMobil and PetroChina were in negotiations with the Iraqi government to run the Southern Iraq Integrated Project, a complex, multibillion-dollar development.
Current oil minister Ihsan Ismaael said on Aug. 23, 2020, that Iraq was still in talks with ExxonMobil to develop SIIP, but gave no further details.
Iraq awarded the contract to develop the southern field to Exxon, Shell and Oil Exploration Co. in 2010.
In 2018, Shell sold its 19.6% stake to ITOCHU.
Exit from Kurdistan
Norwegian oil and gas operator DNO bought ExxonMobil 's 32% stake in the Baeshiqa license in Iraq's Kurdistan region amid plans to boost spending in the semiautonomous area and speed up production from existing wells in 2021.
Iraq signed $8 billion worth of deals with US energy companies in August during Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi's 1st state visit to the US.
The deals with 5 companies included an upstream pact with Chevron and power agreements with GE.
Other companies were Baker Hughes, Honeywell and Stellar Energy.