Brazil Exploration Review 2013
The auction of Libra pre-salt field, forecast to contain between 8 and 12 billion barrels boe in recoverable reserves, was Brazil's first bidding round in the pre-salt area, and failed to meet the high expectations placed on it by the Brazilian government, yet the government, the ANP (National Oil Regulator) and Petrobras are highly satisfied with the results because they managed to attract important and experienced partners in Shell and Total, along with the high rolling Chinese companies. Despite a nine-month global publicity campaign and predictions of fervent bidding by as many as 40 firms, the license was awarded to the only consortium to register a bid. Another controversial state controlled company PPSA will oversee the contract’s implementation, having both voting and veto rights.
Franco Pre-Salt – New Monster Play in Brazil
The Franco pre-salt field, which is located southwest of the massive Libra field that will be auctioned in October 21st, originally had been forecast to contain 3 billion barrels boe of recoverable light oil. In light of new studies, the Franco pre-salt field is now believed to contain recoverable oil volumes equal to or superior to the Libra pre-salt field, something hovering around 10 billion barrels boe. This is excellent news for Petrobras, which is in the process of making major exploratory, production and infrastructure investments and desperately needs new capital. The reason it being excellent news has nothing to do with oil auction…
O&G Mergers and Acquisitions on the rise in Brazil
According to data from KPMG consulting there were 22 merger and acquisition operations in the market during the first 6 months of 2013, 4 times higher than in the first semester of 2012. This is mostly due to the 11th round of bidding that took place in April sponsored by the ANP (National Petroleum Agency). According to a KPMG executive, since the O&G sector had not had any bidding rounds for 5 years, a score of new business opportunities arose that attracted many foreign investors. Of these 22 operations, 10 were buy-outs, where foreign companies bought Brazilian companies in order to enter the market. Another fact that relates to…
North Brazil Oil – Deepwater Oil off the State of Pará
Brazil’s Equatorial Margin, which is the country's coastline facing north, has recently had offshore exploration blocks acquired by a number of players during the 11 bidding round in early 2013. One of the states with a coastline on the Equatorial Margin, the state of Pará already has proven reserves established by Petrobras, which has been drilling there since the beginning of the year. More recently it has been established that these reserves are economically viable to be explored commercially. Rumors had it that Petrobras was satisfied by the way the exploration effort was developing. The Harpia exploration well, which began drilling in January 2013 in water depths of 2…
A Monster Named Libra
Back in 2009 I asked a good friend of my late father, who happened to be a long time Petrobras geologist, if he really knew the full potential of the pre-salt, after a while he looked up and said no not really, I know there are big fields out there, probably up to 10 billion boe in some reservoirs, possibly much more... Well, Petrobras kept on drilling and when Libra was found northeast of the Lula field (5 to 8 billion barrels boe), in 2010, the expectations ran high. Maybe 3.7 billion boe, maybe 15 billion boe. Probably 7.9, those are the numbers the ANP had in 2010. By May 2011 the ANP was downgrading it to 5 billion barrels boe.
Doubling Brazil’s Oil Production
ANP Brazil’s National Petroleum Agency is looking at doubling the country’s O&G production and also its proven reserves in the next 10 years. According to Magda Chambriard, ANP’s Director, that is the challenge faced by the local O&G industry. According to Magda, the O&G industry is already receiving 63% of the country’s investments, and Brazil will still need to invest US$400 billion in the next decade in the services area in order to meet the industry’s demands, while sticking to the local content regulations. Brazil has proven reserves to the tune of 15 billion barrels boe. “The demand on a minimum local content figure on projects in the service area for the O&G industry has created a niche of opportunities for Brazilian and foreign companies present in Brazil, that cannot be ignored.
More Investments Needed Form Offshore Inspections in Brazil
With the recent Chevron/Frade spill, which has been ongoing for over 25 days, new light was shed on the shortcomings of ANP (The national O&G regulator). To begin with the regulator has only spent around $2.5 million of its allotted $8 million budget for inspection of oil and gas E&P in Brazil. As stated by O Globo, Brazil’s leading newspaper, that amount is about what Petrobras spends yearly in coffee for its employees. Only 3% of the agencies total budged is destined for O&G inspections. All that will most likely change in the near future, hopefully. For this to change there needs to be a change of policy in the Brazilian government regarding the importance of O&G activities inspections.
New O&G Operators in Brazil – Aurizonia Petróleo
With the growth of the Brazilian O&G market, various small local operators has sprung up, truly coloring the oil market scene in the country and also attracting foreign investors looking at forming local partnerships.Aurizônia Petróleo was established in 2004 in Rio Grande do Norte, ain north Brazil and has two branches, in Rio de Janeiro (RJ) and in Mossoró (RN). The company's objective is the exploration, production, importation and exportation of oil and natural gas. Since its inception, Aurizônia has been highly successful in building a balanced and successful E&P portfolio in mature land basins in Brazil. Among the areas in which Aurizônia operates…
New National O&G Safety Program for Brazil
A new partnership between ANP (National Petroleum Agency), Ibama (National Environmental Agency) and the Brazilian Navy, plans to upgrade and expand existing E&P safety measures, in order to prevent major oil spills in Brazil. According to Haroldo Lima, Director of ANP, presently Petrobras elaborates the contingency programs for each platform, but now the Brazilian government will launch a nationwide contingency plan led by the navy and involving the regulatory agency and the environmental agency. Although Lima emphasizes that the current safety systems and regulatory systems in place on offshore platforms in Brazil are among the most advanced in the world, he admits there will certainly be upgrades due to the Deepwater Horizon tragedy at the GOM.
New Pre-salt Discovery has 4,5 billion barrels of Recoverable Light Oil
This new ANP discovery is the 2nd largest pre-salt discovery to date in Brazil and highlights the excellent potential of the Brazilian pre-salt.The ultra deepwater well (2-ANP-1-RJS ) was drilled at an area which has been named Franco, it lies 2.189 meters deep and the 4,5 billion barrels of light oil are of around 30º API. The well is located 195km from Rio de Janeiro and 41 km from the Iara pre-salt field, which has a recoverable oil potential of 3 to 4 billion barrels. Both are located at the Santos Basin. The Tupi field, also at the Santos Basin is still the largest discovery to date in Brazil, will a recoverable oil potential of 5 to 8 billion barrels.
New Well Confirms Tupi´s Potential Recoverable Oil Reserves
New discovery at the Tupi field confirms Tupi potential and another new discovery in an ANP block, to be included in onerous concession contract with Petrobras.In early April 2010 Petrobras Petróleo Brasileiro S.A. announced that it finalized the drilling of another well in the Tupi field which confirms the potential of the pre-salt reservoirs in that field. The new well, 3-BRSA-795-RJS (3-RJS-666), and informally known as Tupi OW, is located in the area of the Tupi Evaluation Plan, at a depth of 2,131 meters, nearly 270 km of the coast of Rio de Janeiro, and 12.5 km northeast of the discovery well, 1-RJS-628 (1-BRSA-369), known as Tupi.