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News

Brazil Has Passed Venezuela and Mexico in Oil Production

05/12/2017

New report based on data from 2016 said the country is now the world s ninth-largest producer and the third-largest in the Americas behind the United States and Canada
23.11.2017 15h46m / By Brasil Energy Newsroom
Brazil is a significant energy producer and consumer in global terms, concluded the U.S. Energy Information Agency (EIA) in its newest Country Analysis released this week. Based on 2016 data, the EIA reported that in that year Brazil produced 3.24 million b/d of petroleum and other liquids, making it the world s ninth-largest producer and the third-largest in the Americas behind the United States and Canada.

Increasing domestic oil production has been a long-term goal of the Brazilian government, the EIA noted, and discoveries of large, offshore, pre-salt oil deposits have transformed Brazil into a top-10 liquid fuels producer.

Furthermore, in 2016, Brazil was the eighth-largest energy consumer in the world and the third-largest in the Americas, behind the United States and Canada. Total primary energy consumption in Brazil has nearly doubled in the past decade because of economic growth. Petroleum and other liquids represented about 47% of Brazil s domestic energy consumption in 2016. Renewable energy, hydroelectric power, and nuclear accounted for a combined 37% of Brazil s energy consumption in 2016, the Country Analysis said.

It reported that the Oil & Gas Journal estimated that as of January 2017, Brazil had 13 billion barrels of proved oil reserves, which amounts to the second-largest level in South America after Venezuela and almost 1% of the world s total reserves.

More than 94% of Brazil s oil reserves are located offshore, and 80% of all reserves are found offshore near the state of Rio de Janeiro, according to the EIA s report. The next largest accumulation of reserves is located off the coast of Espírito Santo state, with about 10% of the country s oil reserves. Reserves are expected to rise as pre-salt resources are further explored, the EIA also predicted.

The EIA noted that the dominant state-run Petrobras oil company was currently under investigation in Brazil and in the United States for bribery and money laundering, but explained that in 1997 the government had opened the sector to competition.

Royal Dutch Shell was the first foreign crude oil producer in the country, and since then it has been joined by Chevron, Repsol, BP, Anadarko, El Paso, Galp Energia, Statoil, BG Group, Sinopec, ONGC, and TNK-BP, among others. Competition in the oil sector is not just from foreign companies, the report explained.

To exploit the new oil and gas reserves, the EIA pointed out that Petrobras and its partners (Royal Dutch Shell Plc, France s Total SA, China s CNOOC and National Petroleum Corp) will install the first of four commercial production systems in the Libra offshore oil area in 2020, adding one per year through 2023. Each of the floating, production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessels will have the capacity to produce 180,000 b/d, according to Petrobras. The Libra area holds an estimated 8 billion to 12 billion barrels of oil and equivalent natural gas, according to ANP. This lease is Brazil s first-ever under a production-sharing system with the government.

Brazil exported approximately 798,000 b/d of crude oil in 2016, according to the EIA, an 8% increase from the previous year. China, the largest importer of Brazilian crude oil, imported about 296,000 b/d in 2016, an increase of more than 17% from 2015. Uruguay was the second-largest importer of Brazilian crude oil in 2016, with 100,000 b/d.

The Asia-Pacific region and Central and other South America regions made up the largest export market for Brazil, at 46% and 32%, respectively in 2016. China by alone accounted for 37% of total crude oil exports to Brazil in 2016.

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