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Newcomer Elysian, Petrobras notch big wins in Brazil oil auction – Reuters

he logo of British multinational oil and gas company BP is displayed at their booth during the LNG 2023 energy trade show in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, July 12, 2023. REUTERS/Chris Helgren
he logo of British multinational oil and gas company BP is displayed at their booth during the LNG 2023 energy trade show in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, July 12, 2023. (Chris Helgren/Reuters)

Marta Nogueira and Rodrigo Viga Gaier, Reuters

Energiesnet.com 12 14 2023

Oil companies including Elysian along with veterans Petrobras and Chevron snapped up the most blocks up for grabs in Brazil’s latest offshore oil auction marked by climate protests, as the South American nation looks to replenish reserves with new discoveries.

Oil regulator ANP ran the tender that assigned 192 exploration and production areas out of more than 600 on offer, with newcomer Elysian winning 122 of them.

The government will receive nearly 500 million reais ($102 million) from the blocks auctioned, mostly from contracts for areas in the deep water Pelotas Basin along Brazil’s southern coast.

State-run Petrobras (PETR4.SA) secured 29 blocks in the deep water basin, all as operator with consortium partner Shell (SHEL.L). In three of them, China’s state-owned CNOOC (SASACY.UL) also formed part of the winning group.

“We achieved a very successful strategy… We entered a border area with little probability of having environmental problems,” said Petrobras CEO Jean Paul Prates, describing the area as “very prolific.”

U.S. major Chevron (CVX.N) also won rights in 15 blocks in the same basin.

Elysian is based in Minas Gerais state and was created only in August to compete in the auction. Its winning bids stretched across three other offshore basins – Potiguar, Espirito Santo and Sergipe Alagoas.

Outside the Rio de Janeiro hotel where the auction took place, climate activists loudly protested the push to keep pumping more fossil fuels, linked by scientists to catastrophic global warming, demanding an immediate transition to clean energy.

“The signals that the Brazilian government is sending to the international community with an oil auction a day after the (the global climate meetings in Dubai) are the worst possible,” said Marcelo Laterman, coordinator of Greenpeace’s Oceans Front.

In his opening speech, ANP head Rodolfo Saboia acknowledged the auction may seem like a contradiction, but he argued the world’s dependence on fossil fuels will not be eliminated in five or ten years.

He added that new oil and gas exploration is needed to avoid falling oil production over the next decade.

Brazil is Latin America’s top crude oil producer, followed by Mexico, Colombia and Venezuela.

In the offshore Santos Basin, Karoon (KAR.AX) won a pair of blocks, while CNOOC and Norway’s Equinor won the other two alone.

Five more blocks in Brazil’s pre-salt offshore areas were also auctioned under a sharing regime, with BP (BP.L) winning the rights for the only one that received bids in the Santos Basin.

($1 = 4.9256 reais)

Reporting by Marta Nogueira and Rodrigo Viga Gaier; Writing by Peter Frontini; Editing by Jonathan Oatis, Leslie Adler and Josie Kao

reuters.com 12 13 2023

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