Pacific Rubiales has provided an update on the construction of the oil pipeline that links the Rubiales field with the Monterrey station. The pipeline is being built and will be operated by "Oleoducto de los Llanos Orientales S.A.", a special purpose vehicle organized for the pipeline project, which is owned 35% by Pacific Rubiales and 65% by Ecopetrol S.A.
This project will enable the companies to substantially reduce the transportation costs for Rubiales crude to the export port of Covenas while ensuring that there will be adequate throughput capacity to bring the Rubiales field to its full production potential.
The pipeline transport system, which has been under construction since late 2008, consists of a pipeline 235 km in length and 24 inches in diameter, as well as all the associated pumping and storage facilities. As of July 20, 2009, the pipeline completion progress is as follows:
Line filling will start during the second half of August 2009. The initial capacity of the pipeline will be 170,000 bbl/d (pipeline grade) blended Rubiales heavy oil and can be upgraded to 260,000 bbl/d of blended oil by adding booster pump stations.
The Rubiales field's heavy oil is to be diluted to an API gravity of 18.5 degrees. This would allow for the development and expansion of the Rubiales field to its full potential as well as allowing for the development of the Quifa Block, while reducing transportation costs by almost 50%.
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