Braspetro plans to spend $5.2 billion outside Brazil

Petroleo Brasileiro SA (Petrobras) plans to invest $5.2 billion abroad over 5 years to expand its international division, Braspetro. Braspetro is focusing on areas such as off South America, West Africa, and the US Gulf of Mexico.


By an OGJ Online Correspondent

RIO DE JANEIRO, Apr. 25 -- Petroleo Brasileiro SA (Petrobras) plans to invest $5.2 billion abroad over 5 years to expand its international division, Braspetro.

Jorge Camargo, Braspetro's president, said the company produces 74,000 b/d of crude and refines 29,000 b/d outside Brazil. The company's target is to increase crude production to 300,000 b/d and increase refining capacity to 260,000 b/d.

Last year, Braspetro posted net income of $198 million compared with net income of $22 million in 1999.

The increased profits stem from higher crude prices and also Braspetro's improved operating efficiencies, resulting in lower costs.

"In 1998, it cost us $3.71 to extract a barrel of crude; this figure decreased to $3.14 in 1999," said Camargo. The cost of refining a barrel of crude abroad also dropped from $1.98 in 1999 to 96¢ last year.

Braspetro will focus on areas where deepwater expertise is useful, such as South America, West Africa, and the US Gulf of Mexico.

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