RIO DE JANEIRO - Brazilian oil and natural gas company QGEP Participacoes said late Monday that local regulators had approved the company's development plan for the offshore Atlanta field.
In November, QGEP officials said that production at the field was expected to start in 2014. The company plans to give a detailed timeline for the field's development on Friday.
QGEP, the oil and natural gas arm of local industrial conglomerate Queiroz Galvao, is quickly becoming a player in Brazil's offshore oil industry. Last week, QGEP joined state-run energy giant Petroleo Brasileiro SA, or Petrobras; Portugal's Galp Energia SPGS SA and closely held Barra Energia in announcing the completion of the Carcara subsalt well, which contained one of the thickest reservoirs discovered in Brazil's subsalt region. QGEP also produces natural gas from the Manati offshore field.
The Atlanta field sits above the salt layer that trapped the billions of barrels of crude discovered further south in the Santos Basin, but still holds commercially viable volumes of heavy crude. QGEP previously said that it planned to drill a horizontal well at Atlanta this year.
QGEP is the operator of the BS-4 block containing Atlanta and the sister Oliva field, holding a 30% stake. Barra Energia owns 30%, while OGX paid Petrobras $270 million in late November for the remaining 40% share.
Copyright (c) 2012 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
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