• PDVSA, India reach agreement on joint oil production ventures

    Venezuela’s state-owned oil and natural gas company PDVSA and India have signed accords worth $1.45 billion whereby oil production is expected to increase from 430,000 barrels per day to 855,000 in less than a year. Exports in mind, there is a natiowide shortage of fuel. India’s ONGC Videsh Limited will disemburse $318 million for Indovenezolana, a joint venture in the San Cristobal Field in the Orinoco Oil Belt, where PDVSA remains a majority stakeholder, while Delta Finance BV will provide $1.13 billion for the joint venture Petrodelta, in which PDVSA will also hold a majority stake.

    “Those joint ventures together are currently producing 430,000 barrels. With investments in the next year or year and a half we are going to have a production of 855,000 bpd; in other words, an increase of 435,000 bpd,” said Venezuelan Oil Minister Eulogio Del Pino said during the signing of the agreements. One of the world’s main exporters of crude is trying to recover froma drastic price drop that has worsened the country’s trade deficit over the past three years.

    Meanhile, shortages in fuel supply have memories of queues three kilometres long or worse like during the oil strike 14 years ago haunting drivers in regions like Valencia and Maracay and the situation is getting worse in Aragua and Carabobo, where people have been forced to endure lineups of more than five hours to fill up a tank. “The thing is the price will go up next week,” explained a disgusted customer. Many petrol stations were already closed to change prices at the pump.

    The situation does not seem to be any less discouraging in Guarico, Cojedes, Lara, Portuguesa and Yaracuy, it was reported. Aragua Governor Tarek El Aissami has explained that the problems were due to a delay in importing a chemical necessary to processing derived fuel, while sources for the oil workers’ union have said that the Amuay refinery still does not reach full operation capacity after the accident four years ago, while the one at El Palito (Carabobo) has yet to complete some maintenance started earlier this year. Torey Krug Authentic Jersey

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