Exploration company Petrel Resources has said the passing of a new law in Iraq will open up opportunities for the company. The company has reported pre-tax losses of just over €400,000 for last year, roughly in line with the previous year.

The company said a new Hydrocarbon Law is expected to pass this year. The law recognises the need to develop Iraq's oil resources using international technology and capital.

Petrel says it is currently working on a large oil field development at Subba and Luhais.

It says this development will produce 200,000 barrels of oil a day and 120 million cubic feet of gas when commissioned in 2010 and will cost about $197m.