Chavez Gives Foreign Companies in Orinoco Projects May 1 Ultimatum



The foreign companies that partner Venezuelan state oil firm PDVSA in Orinoco upgrade projects have until May 1 to adapt their structures to new joint ventures in which PDVSA is to have at least 60%, President Hugo Chavez said on Thursday afternoon.

"I'm sure they will accept because we will continue to be partners, but if they do not agree, they are free to leave," Chavez said, according to state news agency ABN.

The president said a new ad hoc law may be necessary to regulate the new ventures, which currently produce some 600,000b/d of synthetic crude.

Chavez was granted special powers on Wednesday by the national assembly that allow him to rule by decree in matters he deems "strategic."

The four Orinoco projects are Ameriven, Cerro Negro, Sincor and Petrozuata. Partners include BP (NYSE: BP), ConocoPhillips (NYSE: COP), Chevron (NYSE: CVX), ExxonMobil (NYSE: XOM), Total (NYSE: TOT) and Statoil (NYSE: STA).

PDVSA currently has stakes of around 40% in each of the projects.

Visit BNamericas to access our real-time news reports, 10-year archive, Fact File company database, and latest research reports. Click here for a Free two week trial to our Latin America Oil & Gas information service.

RELATED COMPANIES
Company: BP plc more info
Operates 33 Offshore Rigs
 - Exxon, BP Targeted in NYC Suit That Relies on 'Nuisance' Theory (Jan 10)
 - Owners of Louisiana-Illinois Pipeline Eye Reversal Next Steps (Dec 21)
 - Canadian Offshore Oil Interest Grows As Pipeline Woes Sink Alberta Prices (Dec 20)
Company: Exxon Mobil Corporation more info
Operates 15 Offshore Rigs
 - ExxonMobil Reports Papua New Guinea Discovery (Jan 16)
 - Exxon, BP Targeted in NYC Suit That Relies on 'Nuisance' Theory (Jan 10)
 - ExxonMobil Reports More Offshore Guyana Success (Jan 05)
Company: Statoil more info
Operates 1 Offshore Rigs
 - Statoil May Build Onshore Terminal for Castberg Oil -Minister (Jan 16)
 - Canadian Offshore Oil Interest Grows As Pipeline Woes Sink Alberta Prices (Dec 20)
 - Sharp Fall In Applications For Norway's Arctic Oil Permits (Dec 05)
Company: Total S.A. more info
 - Total Starts Up Antwerp Refinery And Petrochem Complex After Upgrade (Nov 30)
 - Hoegh LNG: Pakistan LNG Import Project Consortium Folds (Nov 16)
 - France's Total Buys Engie's LNG Business For $1.5B (Nov 08)
Company: ConocoPhillips more info
Operates 12 Offshore Rigs
 - Exxon, BP Targeted in NYC Suit That Relies on 'Nuisance' Theory (Jan 10)
 - ConocoPhillips Vows Financial Discipline As Aims To Boost Output (Nov 08)
 - ConocoPhillips' Profit Beats Estimates, But Budget Cut 10% (Oct 26)
Company: Chevron Corporation more info
 - CB&I, Chevron Lummus Global, Saudi Aramco Launch 'Crude-to-Chemical' JV (Jan 18)
 - Oil Producers Want New Hearing on Impact of Magellan Proposal (Jan 17)
 - Exxon, BP Targeted in NYC Suit That Relies on 'Nuisance' Theory (Jan 10)
Company: PDVSA more info
Operates 14 Offshore Rigs
Manages 26 Offshore Rigs
 - Algeria Sends More Oil To Cuba As Venezuelan Supplies Fall (Jan 10)
 - Venezuela's PDVSA At Risk Of Losing Bonaire Terminal Over Maintenance Delay (Dec 19)
 - Paralysis At PDVSA: Venezuela's Oil Purge Cripples Company (Dec 15)