Brazil
Analysis

Spotlight: Offshore partners wanted by Petrobras

Bnamericas Published: Thursday, September 22, 2022
Spotlight: Offshore partners wanted by Petrobras

Brazil’s federal oil company Petrobras has four exploration and production divestment processes underway to sell part of its interests and seek partners to invest in offshore undertakings. 

The latest process was launched in August and entered the binding stage this week. It involves the sale of 40% of Petrobras’ stake in the BM-POT-17 and POTM-762_R15 concessions, in deep waters of the Potiguar basin

The state-run firm holds a 100% stake in both assets, which are part of the geologically praised and environmentally sensitive equatorial margin.  

“The search for partnerships in these assets is aligned with the company's portfolio management strategy and the improvement in the company's capital allocation, aiming to maximize value,” Petrobras said in a statement. 

The other three partial divestments underway are: 

Espírito Santo blocks 

Petrobras is divesting part of its interest in the deepwater concessions ES-M596_R11, ES-M-598_R11, ES-M-671_R11, ES-M-673_R11 and ES-M-743_R11, in the Espírito Santo basin

The company has Enauta as a partner in the ES-M-598_R11 and ES-M-673_R11 concessions, in both cases with a 20% stake. 

The sale process has been in the binding phase since September 2020. 

Santos basin block

In this case, Petrobras is selling from 50% to 100% of its participation in block BM-S-51, in the Santos basin

Petrobras is the operator with an 80% stake in the asset in a consortium with Repsol Sinopec Brasil, which holds the other 20%.

The process has been in the binding phase since September 2020. 

BM-PAMA-3 and BM-PAMA-8

The binding phase for the sale of part of Petrobras' stakes in the two exploratory concessions located in the Pará-Maranhão basin was launched in September 2020. 

In the case of the BM-PAMA-8 concession, the Brazilian company has Sinopec Exploration and Production as a partner, with a 20% stake.  

DIVESTMENTS TERMINATED

Petrobras tried to sell 50% of its Marlim complex, in the Campos basin, but the process, which had been in the non-bidding stage since December 2020, was canceled in June.

The company began the sale of half of the offshore hub in November 2020, and, a month later launched the non-binding phase, where potential buyers receive guidelines for preparing and submitting proposals. But the process never got to the final stage, where bids are presented. 

The high price and the fact that Petrobras would remain the operator are likely to be behind the decision to abort the sale process, local sources told BNamericas.

In May, the company decided to terminate the process involving the partial sale of its interest in four Sergipe-Alagoas basin deepwater concessions: BM-SEAL-4, BM-SEAL-4A, BM-SEAL-10 and BM-SEAL-11. 

Petrobras holds 100% of the BM-SEAL-4A and BM-SEAL-10 concessions, with ONGC (25%) and IBV (40%) as partners in the BM-SEAL-4 and BM-SEAL-11 concessions, respectively. 

The concessions cover the Agulhinha, Budião, Budião Noroeste, Budião Sudeste, Cavala and Palombeta fields.

The process had been in the binding phase since July 2018. 

Petrobras also failed to conclude the partial sale of its E&P rights in Pelotas basin concession BM-P-2, off the country’s southern coast.

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