Venezuela's National Assembly Approves All 22 E&P JVs

Venezuela's national assembly approved May 4 all of the 22 contracts for new exploration and production joint ventures between state oil firm PDVSA and 16 foreign and domestic oil companies.

"The goal was achieved: increased government control over production and ownership," Angel Rodriguez, the assembly's energy and mines committee chairman told BNamericas.

Where with the old contracts operators would see their expenditure reimbursed by PDVSA, now, as partners "each company will have to invest" to achieve an increase in production.

"And that is the project, to push that," Rodriguez said, referring to increasing production by year-end.

PDVSA has a minimum stake of 60% in each venture and in some cases as much as 80%. The resulting joint ventures are: Boqueron and Petroperija, with the UK's BP; Petroboscan and Petroindependiente with US major Chevron; Petrowarao and Petrowayu with France's Perenco; Onado and Petronado with Argentine firm Compania General de Combustibles; Petrolera Mata, Petroveas and Petroritupano with Brazilian state oil firm Petrobras; Petrocaracol with China's CNPC; Petrorinoco with US independent firm Harvest Natural Resources; Lagopetrol with British-Colombian-French firm Hocol; Kaki with Inemaka, the E&P subsidiary of Venezuela's Inelectra; Petrocuragua with local firm Open; Petroquiriquire with Spain's Repsol YPF; Petroregional del Lago with Anglo-Dutch major Royal Dutch Shell; Petrocabimas with Venezuela's Suelopetrol; Baripetrol with Argentine firm Tecpetrol; Petroguarico with Japan's Teikoku and Petromiranda with Vinccler, the wholly owned local unit of Canada's PetroFalcon Corporation.

Another eight fields, including Jusepin (formerly operated by France's Total and Dacion, formerly operated by Italy's Eni) reverted to PDVSA. Most importantly, the new contracts establish an increased take for the Venezuelan government of 83.33%, distributed in royalties (30%), taxes (50%) and a local development tax of 3.33%.

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