(Reuters) – Ecuador’s state-owned oil company Petroecuador has started meetings to renegotiate long-term sales oil contracts with PetroChina, a process it hopes to conclude in June with the signing of a new deal, it said on Friday.
The negotiations with China’s largest oil and gas producer form part of bid by Ecuador’s President Guillermo Lasso to renegotiate his country’s debt with China, including long-term oil contracts that supported credit operations with Chinese banks.
Petroecuador holds two contracts with PetroChina that end in 2024, but hopes to modify the current conditions to be able to free up some crude oil supplies and be able to sell directly in the spot market.
The first meeting between officials of both oil companies took place virtually, Petroecuador said.
“The topics to be discussed in upcoming sessions are the price formula for Ecuadorian Napo and Oriente crude oils and the extension in the schedule for the delivery of crude oil shipments, which at the moment are valid until 2024,” the company added in a statement.
“Petroecuador hopes to complete this renegotiation – with the signing of the respective agreements – next June,” it said.
The company also hopes to extend crude delivery times with Thai counterpart PTT (PTT.BK).
Ecuador hopes to produce 180 million barrels of oil this year, of which 101 million are earmarked for meeting commitments and exports, according to official figures.