Chavez Gives Foreign Companies in Orinoco Projects May 1 Ultimatum



The foreign companies that partner Venezuelan state oil firm PDVSA in Orinoco upgrade projects have until May 1 to adapt their structures to new joint ventures in which PDVSA is to have at least 60%, President Hugo Chavez said on Thursday afternoon.

"I'm sure they will accept because we will continue to be partners, but if they do not agree, they are free to leave," Chavez said, according to state news agency ABN.

The president said a new ad hoc law may be necessary to regulate the new ventures, which currently produce some 600,000b/d of synthetic crude.

Chavez was granted special powers on Wednesday by the national assembly that allow him to rule by decree in matters he deems "strategic."

The four Orinoco projects are Ameriven, Cerro Negro, Sincor and Petrozuata. Partners include BP (NYSE: BP), ConocoPhillips (NYSE: COP), Chevron (NYSE: CVX), ExxonMobil (NYSE: XOM), Total (NYSE: TOT) and Statoil (NYSE: STA).

PDVSA currently has stakes of around 40% in each of the projects.

Visit BNamericas to access our real-time news reports, 10-year archive, Fact File company database, and latest research reports. Click here for a Free two week trial to our Latin America Oil & Gas information service.

RELATED COMPANIES
Company: BP plc more info
Operates 27 Offshore Rigs
 - BP Chairman Svanberg to Retire; Search Starts for Successor (Oct 19)
 - BP Midstream Partners Seeks To Raise Up To $893MM In IPO (Oct 16)
 - BP, Azerbaijan's SOCAR To Sign Caspian Sea Exploration Deal In 2017 (Oct 12)
Company: Exxon Mobil Corporation more info
Operates 13 Offshore Rigs
 - ExxonMobil Says Julia, Hadrian South Operations Back To Normal After Nate (Oct 10)
 - Iraq's Talks with Exxon on Southern Oilfields in Final Stages-Minister (Oct 09)
 - U.S. Gulf Oil Producers Start Evacuating Staff Ahead of Tropical Storm Nate (Oct 05)
Company: Statoil more info
Operates 1 Offshore Rigs
 - Statoil Takes First Bite Of Solar Market With Brazilian Joint Venture (Oct 04)
 - Statoil Charters Last of Largest Oil Tankers to Hold Crude for Asia Buyers (Sep 28)
 - Statoil And Partners Plan Output Capacity Expansion At Troll Gas Field (Sep 26)
Company: Total S.A. more info
 - Total CEO: US Shale Oil Industry To See Wave Of Investment (Oct 18)
 - Total's CEO Says Will Try To Move Ahead With Iran Gas Project (Oct 17)
 - Total Expands Presence in Mexico (Oct 12)
Company: ConocoPhillips more info
Operates 12 Offshore Rigs
 - Most US Gulf Oil Output Offline Ahead of Tropical Storm Nate (Oct 06)
 - U.S. Gulf Oil Producers Start Evacuating Staff Ahead of Tropical Storm Nate (Oct 05)
 - For ConocoPhillips, Harvey A Test Of Remote Operations (Sep 07)
Company: Chevron Corporation more info
 - Chevron Approves New Tech Investment To Raise Output At North Sea Field (Oct 20)
 - Canada's Keyera Signs Pact With Chevron To Transport, Store NGL (Oct 10)
 - Chevron Starts LNG Output at Australia's Wheatstone (Oct 09)
Company: PDVSA more info
Operates 15 Offshore Rigs
Manages 26 Offshore Rigs
 - Venezuela's Deteriorating Oil Quality Riles Major Refiners (Oct 20)
 - Venezuela Confirms Discussing Citgo Collateral Swap With Rosneft (Oct 04)
 - Venezuelans Face Growing Queues To Buy Gasoline (Sep 21)