Repsol YPF is planning to invest approximately $700 million in Venezuela through 2008 for exploration and production projects. The company is said to be in negotiations with the government for an exploration contract in the western region of Venezuela. Off the record, Repsol is said to one of the favorites for the contract. If awarded to Repsol, the company would receive a 49% stake in the project with the Venezuelan government hold the remaining 51%. Estimate reserves in the area are close to 1.5 billion barrels. The field has the potential to reach a production level of 250,000 barrels per day by 2009. Repsol's Venezuelan production currently stands at 100,000 barrels per day.