PDVSA, Iran's Petropars Begin Ayacucho 7 Block Drilling

Venezuela's state oil company PDVSA and Iran's Petropars have begun drilling well MFK-4E in the Ayacucho 7 block of Venezuela's Orinoco oil belt, PDVSA said in a statement.

Ayacucho 7 covers 500 sq km in Anzoátegui state and is one of 27 blocks in the belt, which is divided into four areas: Boyacá, Junín, Ayacucho and Carabobo.

Ayacucho holds 31.2 billion barrels of oil, of which at least 20% is recoverable, according to initial PDVSA and Petropars studies.

The start of drilling follows a memorandum of understanding the two countries signed as part of the Orinoco Magna reserve project.

The Orinoco belt holds an estimated 235 billion barrels (Bb) of crude, which together with 81Bb of proven reserves increases Venezuela's reserves to 316Bb.

Venezuela and Iran are OPEC member countries.

AGREEMENTS

In a separate statement, Venezuela's energy and oil ministry reported both countries had also signed 29 cooperation agreements.

As part of the deals, PDVSA and Petrobras agreed to create a joint oil and natural gas E&P company.

In addition, Venezuela's state petrochemicals company Pequiven and Iran's National Petrochemical agreed to create a joint company to carry out investments in their respective countries plus other areas.

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