Perupetro Hopes for E&P Contract Authorization by mid-April

Peru's hydrocarbons promotion agency Perupetro hopes to receive a presidential decree allowing it to sign four E&P contracts for blocks 117, 118, 119 and 120 by the middle of April, senior promotions coordinator Winston Wusen told BNamericas.

Peru's ministry of energy and mines endorsed the contract process last week, and it must now pass through the economy and finance ministry followed by the council of ministers and ultimately President Alejandro Toledo, Wusen said.

The contract for block 117 in the Maranon basin will be signed with Brazil's state oil company Petrobras (NYSE: PBR), while blocks 118, 119 and 120 in the Ucayali basin will be signed with US oil company Amerada Hess (NYSE: AHC).

Investment in block 117 will be US$40mn-US$50mn over the course of the first five years, while blocks 118, 119 and 120 will require US$30mn-US$40mn each, local news agency Andina reported.

The law for the promotion of investment in marginal fields stipulates total investment of US$125mn over the course of the next five years by the companies affected by this law: Petrobras, Petrolera Monterrico and Peruvian oil E&P firms Mercantile and Río Bravo.

Perupetro signed 15 oil contracts in 2005 - a 30-year record - and plans to sign roughly 12 this year, according to a previous BNamericas report.

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