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  • Brazil's upstream sector remains resilient in down market


    K. S. Abraham

    Even as global E&P activity struggles through a mediocre year, Brazil's upstream industry continues to rack up significant achievements. New oil production records continue to be set and broken with almost routine regularity. New discoveries of giant oil and gas fields (albeit mostly by Petrobrás) continue to tempt operators into venturing into deeper waters while committing expanded E&P budgets for developments in frontier areas. Greatest focus of exploratory activity remains the Campos basin, with work also taking place in the Santos basin to the south and Espírito Santo basin to the north. Yes, Brazil has its limitations, most notably what many consider an onerous fiscal regime, as well as a perplexingly low rate of commercial discoveries (a number of sub-commercial finds have been hit by foreign operators). Nevertheless, Brazil's offshore sector remains fertile for expanding technical knowledge. Governmental agency ANP is also working to further encourage activity by opening more acreage and obtaining faster approval times for environmental permits.

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