Ecopetrol Pre-qualifying Oil Well Construction, Maintenance

Colombia's state oil firm Ecopetrol is pre-qualifying contractors to undertake oil well construction, maintenance and ancillary field work.

The pre-qualification process could take up to two years, the company said in a statement.

Ecopetrol this month is hosting information meetings on the process in Bogota, Neiva, Barrancabermeja and Villavicencio.

The company is working to expand domestic production of oil and gas as well as refining and biofuels-production capacity.

Ecopetrol exported a record US$3.31bn of crude and other products last year, up 17% from 2005, the company said in a separate statement.

Colombia's Castilla blend, which comes from the Llanos Orientales field, accounted for US$950mn in exports last year, second to fuel oil exports of US$954mn. Vascon crude came in third.

The company produces roughly 300,000boe/d and the country as a whole more than 500,000boe/d.

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