Brazil speeds up studies for building South American gas pipeline

17 February 2006

Sao Paulo, Brazil, 17 Feb – The Brazilian government has decided to speed up the studies for building a network to transport gas from Venezuela to Argentina, as it considers it a strategic project, officials said Friday.

“From the point of view of regional infrastructures, it is the most important project for South America for the last ten years,” Brazil’s minister of mines and energy, Silas Rondeua, told newspaper Valor Económico.

“It is a network that will make it possible to integrate South America via natural gas,” Rondeua said.

Technical teams from Brazil, Venezuela and Argentina are currently meeting in Rio de Janeiro for a further round of discussions.

Last month, the governments of Brazil, Argentina and Venezuela signed an agreement to begin viability studies for building a gas pipeline between the countries, which will be some 10,000 kilometers long.

The pipeline is expected to cost around US23 billion.

On March 10 the presidents of Brazil, Argentina and Venezuela are due to present the project, which is already considered to be the greatest project of the next 50 years in South America.

The pipeline will begin in the region of Puerto Orda, in Venezuela, and will travel on to Manaus, the capital of the Brazilian state of Amazonas, crossing Brazil and arriving in Uruguay, Argentina, Paraguay, Chile, Bolivia and, possibly, Peru and Colombia. (macauhub)