Oil Agency Chief Betting on 7% Growth for Brazil in 2006

The general director of the National Petroleum, Natural Gas, and Biofuels Agency (ANP), Haroldo Lima, said on Wednesday, January 11, that the Brazilian economy needs to improve its performance.

He is betting that the annual growth rate will surpass 7%, "as was the case when the country had one of the world’s fastest growth rates, until the beginning of the decade of the 1970’s."

According to the ANP director, the petroleum and gas sector will do its part by investing US$ 66.2 billion through 2010, 52% of which will go to oil exploration and production.

Lima recalled that the petroleum and gas sector has grown 318% since 1997, a period in which the Brazilian economy as a whole grew only 26%. In 2005 the sector grew 10%, putting it in second place among the various segments of the economy.

Lima made these declarations during a ceremony in which 93 petroleum and gas exploration contracts were signed at the ANP. The exploratory concessions were granted to private enterprises during the Seventh Bidding Round, held last October.

ABr

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