Ecopetrol announced its agreement with Enbridge Inc. to acquire the shares of the latter in Oleoducto Central S.A. ("Ocensa") for US $417.8 million. With this transaction, which it expected to close on March 17, 2009, Ecopetrol's shares in Ocensa will increase from 35.3% to 60%.
This transaction will strengthen Ecopetrol's position in the most important oil transport system in Colombia. As such, the transaction is vital to the growth strategy of the Company, which aims to increase Ecopetrol's oil production in the Eastern Plains region of Colombia and promote the development of new business opportunities.
The Ocensa pipeline starts onshore at the Cusiana and Cupiagua fields, has a capacity to transport up to 650 thousand barrels of oil per day, a length of 829 kilometers, five pumping stations and an export port in Covenas (which is on the Colombian Caribbean Coast).
The Ocensa pipeline has enabled Ecopetrol and other operators to increase crude oil production in the Eastern Plains region of Colombia, which is already the largest oil production region in the country and has significantly increased its production of oil in recent years as a result of the development of heavy crude oil fields.
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