LIMA Mar 30, 2007 (Dow Jones Newswires)
Peru's Energy and Mines Minister Juan Valdivia said late Thursday that a unit of the China National Petroleum Corp. has discovered crude oil in the northern jungle region.
The minister said in a statement that the size of the discovery is still being analyzed.
Government news agency Andina quoted Valdivia as saying the discovery was made in conjunction with Pluspetrol Norte SA in Block 1-AB in the Loreto department.
Valdivia said that the news of the discovery was given to him by a high level CNPC official during a meeting in Lima.
"They guaranteed us that if it is confirmed that the reserves are commercially viable then crude production could start in 2015," Valdivia said.
The CNPC and Valdivia also signed a memorandum of understanding for amplifying an accord on exploring and developing hydrocarbons.
The Chinese company is also expected to take part in the auctioning of other lots by government agency Perupetro, which could place in July, Valdivia said.
Copyright (c) 2007 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
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