Pipeline capacity dilemma still hamstrings Ecuadorian producers

ARCO Oriente Inc. has taken steps to resolve, at least in the short term, the problem that all operators in Ecuador must contend with: lack of pipeline capacity out of the Oriente region.For years, Petroecuador and successive governments in Quito have grappled with this problem, which centers on two solutions: expansion of the Trans-Ecuadorian trunk pipeline (SOTE) and/or construction of a new 250,000 b/d pipeline to take away potentially increasing volumes of heavy oil. For the better part of a decade, this problem has seemed intractable despite a string of proposals and studies. While some hurdles remain, the parties involved may be closer than ever to a solution.The dilemmaARCO Oriente...

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