Petrobras Inks Deal with Halliburton for Subsalt Operations

Petrobras and Halliburton have signed a technological cooperation agreement for pre-salt reservoir research and development. Three research projects were negotiated: technologies to determine contamination in bottom hole fluid samples; well production behavior simulations in the laboratory; salt and CO2 formation cementation. Additionally, twelve other projects are still under negotiation. The agreement will be in effect for three years, and can be renewed for an equal term. Petrobras foresees it will invest some $15 million in the projects.

The signature ceremony, held at Petrobras' main office building, in Rio de Janeiro, was attended by Petrobras' Exploration and Production director, Guilherme Estrella; by the executive manager for E&P Production Engineering, Solange Guedes; the executive manager for E&P-PRESAL, José Miranda Formigli Filho; and by the general manager for Petrobras’ Research and Development Center (Cenpes), Ricardo Luís Beltrão, representing the executive manager for the Cenpes, among other E&P and Cenpes managers. Halliburton was represented by its president for Global Business and Technology, Thimothy Probert; by the company's president for the Western Hemisphere, James Brown; Operations director in Brazil, Cidar Mansilla; by the Global director for Petrobras, Reinaldo Rezende, and by other executives.

The project portfolio established pursuant to the technological cooperation agreement between the two companies will lead to the deployment, in 2011, of the Halliburton Brazil Technologies and Solutions Center in Rio de Janeiro, to be located on the Fundão Island. This center will be part of the company's technological excellence network and is the first to be installed in the Southern Hemisphere. The excellence network is composed of seven centers located in several countries, such as the United States, Canada, India and Singapore. According to Cidar Mansilla, the executive director of Halliburton, the technological center is expected to generate a few hundred job openings for Brazilian technicians, particularly in the research and development area.

To Petrobras' E&P director, Guilherme Estrella, the partnership between Petrobras and Halliburton will help the company overcome the challenges it will be up against in the next few years, not only in the pre-salt, but in several other projects as well. He also mentioned that Halliburton has been contributing to Petrobras' progress in exploration and production since the 1960s, initially in the Recôncavo Basin, in Bahia. "I believe this agreement is a new and important step taken in the relationship between Petrobras and Halliburton," said the director.