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CNOOC Launches Production at Brazilian Deepwater Oil Field

A deepwater oil field in Brazil that is operated by China’s CNOOC has started production, Chinese media reported, noting the capacity of the project is 180,000 bpd.

The Mero 2 project is part of the Mero field, which is one of the three biggest ones in the prolific Santos Basin off the coast of southeastern Brazil.

The field is part of the pre-salt zone of Brazil that contains most of the country’s untapped oil and gas resources. It is also the source of most of its current production: most of Brazil’s oil output growth over the past ten years has come from the pre-salt zone according to data from BloombergNEF.

CNOOC, which focuses on developing energy assets outside China, plans to drill a total of 16 wells at the Mero 2 project, of which half will be production wells and the rest will be injection wells. There are a total of four production units at the Mero field, one of them already producing.

The pre-salt zone is a priority for local Petrobras, too. The company said last year at the announcement of its five-year plan that it will install 11 new floating production, storage, and offloading units in that zone. The additions will help it boost daily production from the zone to 2.4 million barrels of oil equivalent.

What’s more, the company said it would allocate two-thirds of its production and exploration spend for the five-year period to the pre-salt zone. Thanks to these investments, Petrobras is eyeing daily production of 3.1 million barrels of oil equivalent by 2027.

Brazil has ambitions to become the world’s fourth-largest oil producer and it is betting on more than just Petrobras to make it happen. Besides CNOOC, all the international majors are present in the country’s pre-salt zone.

Last year, Brazil said it was going to tender three more areas in the prolific zone, with potential reserves of 16.8 billion barrels of oil equivalent.

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By Charles Kennedy for Oilprice.com

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  • ferryk k on January 03 2024 said:
    For correction, CNOOC is not the operator of Mero, Petrobras is the operator on behalf of the Libra consortium of Petrobras, Total, Shell and the Chinese companies.

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