Barrett Evaluating Offers to Partner on Block 67

US oil firm Barrett Resources is evaluating offers from companies interested in becoming a strategic partner for block 67 in Peru, according to company corporate affairs director Fernando Deustua.

Barrett has hired investment bank Goldman Sachs as financial advisor for this process, state news agency Andina quoted Deustua as saying.

Development of block 67 to produce 100,000b/d of heavy crude starting in 2011 will require investment of US$1.6bn. The block is in the Marañón basin in Loreto department. Barrett will continue to operate the block.

A data room has been prepared that companies can access by signing a confidentiality agreement, Deustua said.

Barrett's principal partner Citigroup and multilateral lenders such as the World Bank will help finance part of the US$1.6bn, he added.

In related news, Barrett asked the energy and mines ministry to expedite approval of the EIS to carry out seismic work at the block.

"We have expressed our concern to the ministry and expect approval this week," Deustua said.

Barrett's timetable calls for starting seismic and basic engineering work on October 15.

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