LatinNews Daily - 14 July 2022

In brief: Bolivia gov’t requests approval of new oil contracts

*Bolivia’s energy ministry (MHE) has submitted five new hydrocarbon exploration contracts to the legislative assembly for approval. The contracts relate to new hydrocarbon exploration in Santa Cruz, Chuquisaca and Tarija departments. In a press conference Energy Minister Franklin Molina said the contracts would signify initial investment of US$582.2m and if exploration is successful would generate over US$1.7bn for the Bolivian state. Two contracts are for Canada-headquartered Canacol Energy Colombia in Santa Cruz department and the other three contracts will go to Vintage Petroleum Inc, a subsidiary of US-based Occidental Petroleum Corp. in Carandaití, an area spanning Santa Cruz, Chuquisaca and Tarija, and in Sayurenda and Yuarenda in Tarija. Molina said that the contracts are in line with the strategy outlined for the state-owned hydrocarbons company, Yacimientos Petrolíferos Fiscales Bolivianos (YPFB), which has been implemented since 2021, of establishing links with strategic associates permitting the dynamisation of the sector. He expressed hopes that, if the contracts are approved, production could begin in 2023.

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