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Oil Prices’ Collapse Forces Brazil’s Petrobras to Review US$ 112 Bi Investment Plan

Brazilian Petrobras rig Petrobras, the Brazilian state-controlled oil and gas multinational, will continue to review its massive 2009/2013 investment plan next January on account of the uncertainties and volatility of several markets, said the company in an official release.

Petrobras directors in their last December meeting said existing spending plans will be maintained but asked for a full review of the draft plan for the next five years. "The Board recommended that the projects be reassessed based on cost premises to face the scenarios at hand," added the release. The new plan was originally scheduled to be released in October.

In London Brazil's Energy minister Edison Lobão admitted that the collapse of the oil price in international markets has made it difficult for Petrobras to plan ahead. Crude prices reached US$ 147 US last July and on Friday, December 19, closed at US$ 34.

Petrobras investment plan for 2008/2012 involved US$ 112 billion and had been approved last year. Basically US$ 22 billion were to be invested annually to expand oil and gas output, increase its share in the ethanol market and upgrade refineries.

In related news Petrobras announced that the corporation's average oil production in Brazil was 1,844,940 barrels per day in November, 4.6% over a year ago, but a slight 1.5% decrease compared to October 2008.

Natural gas production in domestic fields, averaged 51.241 million cubic meters per day, 16.7% above November 2007 and 4.8% more than a month earlier.

According to Petrobras crude production in November was lower due to the scheduled shutdowns at platforms operating in the Northeastern Pole of the Campos Basin, which are already running normally again.

Adding oil and natural gas volumes, average domestic field production reached 2,167,236 barrels of oil equivalent (boe) per day, 6.4% more than a year ago and 1.9% less than the volume extracted in October 2008 on account of the platform shutdowns.

Petrobras' total production (oil and gas in Brazil and abroad) was 2,403,403 barrels of oil equivalent per day, 6.5% more than a year earlier and 1.5% less than October 2008.

Mercopress

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