The Strategist

Argentine Tecpetrol to pump $ 2.5 billion into shale deposits

03/24/2017 - 15:19

Argentinian Tecpetrol, part of the Techint Group, plans to invest $ 2.3 billion in shale deposits of Vaca Muerta by 2019.

Tecpetrol will seek production of 14 million cubic meters of shale gas by 2019, said Sen. Guillermo Pereira at meeting of the company’s representatives and President Mauricio Macri. According to him, this is half of the total volume of gas imported by Argentina.

Tecpetrol plans to drill 150 wells in the Vaca Muerta area in the next 3 years, spending $ 1.6 billion on this. Another $ 700 million will be invested in waste management, gas processing and transportation.

In January, Argentina reached an agreement with energy companies and trade unions to increase production at the fields of Vaca Muerta, which hides one of the world's largest reserves of non-traditional hydrocarbons. The agreement implies that oil companies, including state-owned YPF, Chevron, Total, Royal Dutch Shell and BP Pan American Energy, will invest $ 5 billion in 2017.

The Vaca Muerta deposit, located in the Neuquén province, has been discovered in 2011 and has one of the world's largest shale hydrocarbon reserves. According to the US Department of Energy, its reserves amount to 308 trillion cubic feet of gas and 16.2 billion barrels of oil.

Global investments in exploration and production of oil in 2017 will grow by 11% year-on-year to $ 25 billion, the British consulting company Wood Mackenzie estimated on the basis of plans of 119 oil-producing companies in the world.

According to Woodmac, 99 companies out of 119 are planning to increase investments in exploration and production this year.

American companies are going to be leaders in the exploration and production sector (E&P) investment with 60% increase to $ 15 billion. At the same time, shale companies such as Pioneer and EOG have the greatest appetite for increasing production. "Large budgets are also expected in Canada, Latin America and Russia", the report says. 

"For many companies, the year 2017 will be the year of return to production growth," analysts write. In total, production of explored companies in 2017 will grow by 1 million barrels per day per year or 5%, follows from the agency’s infographic report. At the same time, companies located in the US intend to increase this figure by 800 thousand barrels or 15%, the report says. 


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