BUENOS AIRES - The chief executives of Argentina's state-run oil company, YPF SA, and Russia's government-controlled gas company, Gazprom, met Tuesday and agreed to explore working together on conventional and unconventional gas and liquefied-natural-gas projects, YPF said in a statement.
The meeting comes as YPF's new chief executive, Miguel Galuccio, is moving to attract foreign investment and form partnerships with international oil and gas companies. YPF is seeking investment partners to help it boost both conventional and unconventional oil and gas production.
"It was a positive meeting and another open door to advance with the ambitious goals we have set forth in our plan. Gazprom is the most important gas company in the world and we've found common points to quickly explore collaboration," Mr. Galuccio said in the statement.
Mr. Galuccio met with Gazprom Chief Executive Alexei Miller, and the two agreed to send technical teams to visit each other's countries in a bid to enhance collaboration.
Last week, Mr. Galuccio unveiled plans to invest $37.2 billion through 2017 to boost spending on oil, natural gas and refining. He said YPF will raise oil production by 32% between 2013 and 2017 and increase diesel and other refining-product output by 37% during this period. Many of the projects involve unconventional petroleum resources such as shale gas.
Earlier this year, Argentina's government expropriated YPF from Spain's Repsol SA in a dispute over investment and production. The government hasn't publicly offered any funds to the Spanish company, which is seeking around $10 billion in compensation for the loss of its Argentine unit.
Mr. Galuccio said that while some potential partners would be wary of investing in Argentina because of the expropriation, others would not. He said he is confident that related concerns will dissipate as YPF advances with its production plans.
Copyright (c) 2012 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
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