Petrobrás admits super-field in ES, Novo Jubarte, and will pay debt of R $ 3.1 billion


After almost five years of dispute with the National Agency of Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels (ANP), Petrobras agreed to pay a debt of R $ 3.1 billion – R $ 1.1 billion at one time later this year , and the remainder 60 times. The company will compensate the state governments, municipalities and Union, for the production in the super-field Novo Jubarte, which denied to exist. The money, expected in April, should help Espírito Santo close the Social Security account in 2018.

Petrobrás treated the reservoir of Novo Jubarte as if they were seven, without interconnection between them. As a result, it could be exempted from the payment of special participation, a financial compensation that focuses exclusively on large producing areas. In 2013, the government of Espírito Santo, where the reservoir is located, warned the regulatory agency that the following year it issued a resolution forcing the company to admit the existence of the super-field and to collect the special participation related to it. It started the dispute between the oil company and the regulatory agency. At the end of last year, Petrobrás and ANP agreed to unify five areas – Jubarte, Baleia Azul, Baleia Franca, parts of Cachalote and Pirambu, as well as small plots of Caxaréu and Mangangá. All are divisions of the block BC-60, granted by the Union to the state-owned company in the so-called zero round, before starting to auction off concessions to the market.

Although the super-field is smaller than the ANP anticipated, in volume of production, loses only for the national leader, the Lula field, located in the pre-salt of the Santos Basin. Petrobrás estimates total investment of US $ 8.3 billion in Novo Jubarte, which, in the next 20 years, should generate R $ 25.7 billion in special participation (equivalent to R $ 18.6 billion at present value, with a discount of 10% per year of inflation), according to a document from the regulatory agency.

With the end of the impasse with the ANP, Petrobrás will be able to extend the concession period for 27 years, ending in 2029. Since 2016, in Parque das Baleias, Petrobras extracted 541 million barrels of oil in the region. “The operator expects to enable the additional production of 665 million barrels of oil, increasing the recovery factor from 14.8% to 22.4%,” the ANP informs the report.

A new platform, with a capacity of 100,000 barrels per day, is expected to begin production in the area in 2022.

Principal beneficiary  by the agreement, the Espírito Santo government has cash inflow of up to R $ 750 million in April of this year and the remainder, about R $ 500 million, in installments. After the public hearing on Thursday, 14, the agreement must also pass through the Ministry of Mines and Energy and the Attorney General’s Office, a process that should extend until the end of March. Only then will it be signed and, after ten days, the state-owned company will have to pay the first installment, of R $ 1.1 billion.

Source: Estado de S. Paulo

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