Repsol plans to invest $4 billion in Venezuela through 2022

Repsol SA, Spain’s largest oil producer, plans to invest $4 billion in Venezuela through 2022 on existing projects and discoveries to more than double oil output.

The investments will peak in 2017, Cosme Vargas, the technical manager for crude oil assets for Madrid-based Repsol said in an interview yesterday at the Latin American Petroleum Show oil conference in Maracaibo in Western Venezuela.

“The company expects to increase net oil output in Venezuela from around 40,000 barrels a day currently to nearly 100,000 barrels a day by 2022,” Vargas said.

Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Antonio Brufau said on Oct. 16 that his company was committed to making investments in Venezuela over the long-term. Venezuela is seeking investments from foreign partners as it looks to increase oil production to 6 million barrels a day by the end of 2019.

Repsol, with an 11 percent stake, also participates in the Carabobo-1 project in Venezuela’s Orinoco heavy oil belt, the largest accumulation of heavy and extra-heavy oil in the world. It has the capacity to produce 400,000 barrels of oil a day, according to Venezuela’s state oil company Petroleos de Venezuela.

PDVSA, as the Caracas-based company is known, has a controlling 60 percent stake in the Carabobo-1 project while foreign partners hold the remaining 40 percent stake.

Malaysia’s Petronas said Sept. 10 that it would exit the project and PDVSA has temporarily assumed the company’s 11 percent stake, according to Venezuelan Oil Minister Rafael Ramirez, who also serves as the president of the state oil company.

Partners in Carabobo-1 include India’s Oil & Natural Gas Corp. with an 11 percent stake, and Indian Oil Corp. and Oil India Ltd.  with 3.5 percent each.

“Repsol will not acquire Petronas’ stake in the Petrocarabobo oil project,” Vargas told reporters today. The official said Indian companies were interested in assuming the stake without providing details.