Exclusives

Like in many shale plays around the world, players interested in the Vaca Muerta Formation must overcome steep learning curves and find adequate financing. But the prize is there. 

President Energy, Paraguay, Boqueron, seismic, well, Pirity

The company said its Boqueron prospect in Paraguay’s Hernandarias Block could hold unrisked recoverable gas resources of an estimated 559 billion cubic feet plus 302 million barrels of oil and 17 MMbbl of condensate.

Venezuela, gas, production, Perla, Repsol, PDVSA

Venezuela’s oil industry consumes most of the country’s gas, low prices offer little incentive, and technical obstacles are belowground.

Guyana flag

The Guyana discovery would be on par with the combined size of a cluster of three reservoirs Exxon found in the Gulf of Mexico between 2009 and 2011, Bloomberg said.

Blocks offered target both mature plays and new frontiers. 

Deepwater International

Technip has clinched a major contract worth at least $559.2 million to supply a network of flexible pipes for the deepwater Lula Alto field offshore Brazil.

The issues related to Petrobras and the ongoing corruption probe in Brazil could lead to at least four major deepwater FPSO projects hitting at least a one-year delay, according to Portugal’s Galp Energia.

QGI Oil & Gas consortium has abandoned more than $1 billion worth of modules integration work on two identical FPSO vessels destined for one of Petrobras’ developments.

Petrobras has churned out announcement of yet another ultra-deepwater discovery but this time in the post-salt. 

Petrobras has highlighted the money it is saving through the utilisation of subsea equipment support vessels (SESVs) instead of drillships and rigs to install its subsea trees in the pre-salt offshore Brazil.

Exploration

Block 100 covers 77 sq km (30 sq miles) in the Peruvian jungle and was declared commercially viable by the Peruvian authority Perupetro in 2009, a news release said.

In a statement, Argentina’s YPF said the accord involved a pilot project in the Bajada de Anelo Block, located in  Neuquen province that would run until mid-2018, Reuters reported.

While Ecuador remains opposed to the arbitration decision, Attorney General Diego Garcia it must pay Occidental. If it does not pay the arbitration award, Ecuador could face asset seizures, Reuters reported.

Estimates indicate that the well’s output potential could be as high as the most prolific wells of the Santos Basin’s presalt layer, with good quality 31 degree API oil. It is a single oil accumulation.

The contract provides for an autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) geophysical survey and an environmental baseline survey, along with shallow geohazard and geotechnical coring.

Production

Government hopes flat tax of 2.71 reais, or 69 cents, on every barrel of oil and gas produced in the state, will raise about 1.84 billion reais (US$476 million), Reuters said.

Marlim, though, is in decline and even with new wells and oil recovery efforts, production levels are expected to drop over coming years, Reuters said.

The strike, thought to be the most disruptive in 20 years, cost the production of 2.29MMbbl of oil and 48.4MMcm of natural gas, Reuters reported.

State oil firm ANCAP said that the well will be drilled about 400 km (249 miles) from the seaside capital Montevideo at 3,400 m (11,155 ft) deep, Reuters reported.

The company and Brazil's two main oil union federations met on Nov. 9 without agreeing on demands that Petrobras restore cut investments and end plans to sell assets, Reuters said.

Technology

Companies that are negotiating leniency deals are said to include Brazil’s OAS, Galvão Engenharia, Engevix, Setal Óleo e Gás, UTC, Camargo Corrêa and Andrade Gutierrez, Reuters reported.

Prosecutors said Jorge Zelada, former head of Petrobras' international division, helped scrap competitive bidding process, resulting in Odebrecht winning contract to analyze Petrobras' potential environmental liabilities abroad in 2010, Reuters reported.

London-based Ensco said it has not been contacted by other Brazil government authorities regarding alleged wrongdoing.

The indictment said five PDVSA officials, whom it did not name, received hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes made principally in the form of wire transfers but also through mortgage payments, airlines tickets and, in one case, whiskey.

Director Luiz Nelson Guedes de Carvalho has been interim CEO since Sept. 14, 2015, and will be CEO until Jan. 1, 2016.