Galp-Petrobras consortium competes for deepwater blocs in East Timor

14 March 2006

Lisbon, Portugal, 14 March – Oil companies, Galp, from Portugal and Brazil’s Petrobras are set to compete for two or three deepwater blocs in the international tender for oil drilling in the Timor Sea, a Petrobras director told Portuguese financial daily, Diário Económico.

Guilherme Estrella, exploration director at Petrobras said that the proposals would “all” be for “deepwater blocs” due to a lack of quality of the seismic survey for shallow waters.

The onshore area, Estrella said, “is not particularly interesting from a geological point of view.”

According to Estrella the consortium has a ”great chance,” of victory, which if it occurred would give it a head-start in the country when it came to granting concessions for “the most interesting blocs.”

According to the official schedule of the oil exploration tender in the Timor Sea proposals will be analyzed by the end of March.

In total concessions will be granted for 11 blocs, covering a total area of 28,776 square kilometers.

The final report is due to be handed to the East Timor Natural resources Minister by April 18, and contracts signed by May 20.

Estrella also said it was possible that Petrobras would be part of oil exploration in Sao Tome and Principe, and said that this had not occurred so far because the licensing conditions “are not advantageous” particularly in terms of price.

In the interview, Estrella also said that Petrobras may use Galp’s refineries in Portugal to export refined products to Europe, making use of the strategic partnership between the two countries. (macauhub)