Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Petrobras Breaks Production Record

Petrobras' Brazil oil output hits record in Aug.

SAO PAULO, Sept 16 (Reuters) - Petrobras' (PBR) domestic monthly oil output rose to a record high in August after production was raised at two wells and another platform entered into service, Brazil's state-run energy firm said on Tuesday.

Petrobras, which accounts for nearly all crude production and refining in Latin America's largest country, said it pumped an average of 1.89 million barrels per day last month, up 1 percent from 1.87 million bpd in July and above the average of 1.79 million bpd for all of 2007.

Petrobras said August's output made it a record month. The firm's crude output has risen more or less steadily since 2000, and is now expected to soar after its discovery of deep subsalt reserves late last year of 5 billion to 8 billion barrels of light crude deep beneath the ocean floor in the Santos basin.
Petrobras sees pre-salt output 1.1 mln bpd in 2017.

RIO DE JANEIRO, Sept 16 (Reuters) - Brazil oil giant Petrobras(PBR) expects to be producing 1.126 million barrels a day of oil equivalent from its new "pre-salt" fields by 2017, the head of exploration and production for the fields said on Tuesday.

"In 2017, it (pre-salt) will have a significant mark on production with eight complete platforms of 120,000 bpd and three planned pilots of 100,000 bpd," Jose Formigli told reporters at the Rio Oil and Gas conference.

Petrobras has invested $1 billion, drilling 20 wells into the sub-salt layer of Brazil's coast since 2005 and has encountered large quantities of high-grade light oil and natural gas. Analysts estimate the sub-salt reserves could contain up to 80 billion barrels of oil, catapulting Brazil into the top 10 oil producers.

Last year, Petrobras produced 1.79 million bpd. It expects an average annual output growth of over 7 percent through 2012.

Formigli said the expected pre-salt production from the pre-salt cluster in the Santos basin would be included in the firm's business plan for 2009 to 2020 which is due to be released in October.

Formigli added that Petrobras was not concerned about the recent sharp fall in world oil prices since the company's plans for the pre-salt production were based on a price of $35 per barrel.

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