Petrobras farms in to Shell-operated blocks offshore Africa

Feb. 9, 2024
Petrobras closed a deal to acquire interest in three exploration blocks offshore Africa from Shell plc.

Petróleo Brasileiro SA (Petrobras) has closed a deal to acquire interest in three exploration blocks offshore Africa from Shell plc.

After signing amendments to the production sharing contracts and joint operating agreements, Petrobras has joined the consortia for blocks 10, 11, and 13, in São Tomé and Príncipe, Africa.

Shell is operator of all three blocks with 40% interest. Partners in Block 10 are Petrobras (45%) and ANP-STP (15%). Partners in Block 11 are Petrobras (25%), Galp (20%), and ANP-STP (15%). Partners in Block 13 are Petrobras (45%) and ANP-STP (15%).

In a release Feb. 8, Petrobras said the deal “marks the resumption of exploratory operations on the African continent, with the aim of diversifying the portfolio, and is in line with the company's long-term strategy, aimed at restoring oil and gas reserves by exploring new frontiers and working in partnership.”

Petrobras’ board of directors approved the company's operations in São Tomé and Príncipe in December 2023 to enable the acquisition. At the time, Petrobras said the transaction was part of the scope of the memorandum of understanding signed in March 2023 by Petrobras and Shell, one objective of which was to identify upstream business opportunities between the companies (OGJ Online, Mar. 10, 2023).

Shell has been active in São Tomé and Príncipe since 2019 when Shell Sao Tome and Principe BV acquired interests in two production-sharing contracts with the government for the offshore deep-water Blocks 6 and 11, according to its website. 

Adding to its frontier acreage offhore Africa, Shell acquired KE STP Co. and with it additional interests in deep-water exploration Blocks 6 and 11 and interests in deep-water exploration Blocks 10 and 13. The acquisition closed in December 2020 when KE STP, registered in the Cayman Islands, became a Shell Group entity.