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Petroecuador reaches deal with indigenous group, ending protest at Amazon oil blocks – Reuters

 Leonidas Iza, leader of Ecuador's indigenous organization CONAIE, and leaders of the indigenous nationalities of the Sierra, the coast and the A ndes, Quito, Ecuador February 24, 2023.
Leonidas Iza, leader of Ecuador’s indigenous organization CONAIE, and leaders of the indigenous nationalities of the Sierra, the coast and the A ndes, Quito, Ecuador February 24, 2023.(Karen Toro/Reuters)

Reporting by Alexandra Valencia, Reuters

EnergiesNet.com 04 12 2023

Ecuador’s state oil company, Petroecuador, said on Tuesday it had reached an agreement with an indigenous group to end an ongoing protest at two of the firm’s oil blocks in the Amazon, which had crippled production at the sites.

The neighboring blocks in the Orellana province, as well as three others, were subject to a force majeure decision by the company last month amid the protests.

The Dicaro community, formed by the Waorani indigenous group, had demanded economic support from the company.

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The groups reached an agreement as part of a community relationship plan, Petroecuador said, without disclosing the details.

“The company will take the pertinent steps, within its powers, to comply with the commitments,” Petroecuador said in a statement.

Community leaders could not immediately be reached for comment.

An incident, which the firm called “vandalism,” at the facilities running the two blocks last week caused production to fall to 6,337 barrels per day (bpd) on Sunday from an average of 13,500 bpd, according to official data.

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Protests across a number of Petroecuador’s oil blocks have affected production in the past month, though the Waorani protest at blocks 16 and 67 was the last one remaining.

The firm has also faced electrical issues at several blocks, and in February, it had to suspend crude pumping for the country’s two oil pipelines after a nearby bridge collapsed.

Since then, the government has lowered its oil production target for the year from 520,000 bpd to a maximum of 490,000 bpd.

Reporting by Alexandra Valencia; Writing by Kylie Madry; Editing by Richard Chang

reuters.com 11 -4 2023

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