Reliance Industries is looking at buying Petronas’ 11% participating interest in Venezuela’s $20-billion Carabobo-1 project, RIL’s senior vice-president Swagat Bham said at a presentation made at the Petrotech 2014 conference.
In 2009, RIL had dropped out of the winning bid made by ONGC Videsh for developing the Carabobo-1 project. OVL owns 11 % stake in the project while OIL and IOC hold 3.5% each. Spain’s Repsol SA holds 11% in the project. The remaining 60% is with Petroleos de Venezuela SA (PdVSA).
Bham said RIL was also looking at other heavy oil upgrade projects in Venezuela for participation. Latin America, he said, was of interest to RIL and the company was also looking at opening up of exploration licenses in Mexico.
The Carabobo-1 project in the Orinoco heavy oil belt began limited production in March and will produce 480,000 barrels of oil a day at peak. About $20 billion is needed to develop and produce oil from the field.
The consortium, which had in 2010 paid $ 1.05 billion to win the project, is also investing in a separate 200,000-barrel-per-day upgrader to convert heavy crude into light crude oil.