Equinor sees Brazil’s Peregrino oilfield restarting in H1

(Reuters) – Equinor’s Peregrino oilfield off the coast of Brazil is on track to restart in the first half of this year following several delays, a spokesman said on Monday.

The heavy oil field in the Campos basin was shut in April last year due to a rupture of a so-called riser at the Peregrino A platform during a test. Since the rupture was caused by corrosion, the company has decided to repair or replace other risers.

“The Peregrino field in Brazil is still shut down due to the riser rupture,” the company said in a letter to analysts on Monday, ahead of its quarterly earnings report due on April 29.

Equinor had originally expected to complete the repairs by the end of 2020, and then in the first quarter of 2021, but progress has been slowed down by the COVID-19 pandemic, the company said.

“We expect (Peregrino) production to resume in the first half of 2021,” an Equinor spokesman said on Monday, reiterating the outlook given in the company’s annual report published on March 19.

The company has estimated the repairs to cost around $60 million net to the company, classified as operational costs, and spread over the last quarter of 2020 and the first quarter of 2021.

Equinor’s equity output from Peregrino dropped to 9,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boed) in 2020, down from 37,000 boepd the previous year.

The company’s total oil and gas output stood at 2.1 million boepd last year, with 40% produced outside Norway.

China’s state-run Sinochem holds a 40% stake in Peregrino.

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