ONGC set to buy stake in Campos basin

ONGC has reportedly reached a tentative deal with ExxonMobil Corp. to buy its stake in an offshore block off Brazil's southeastern coast for $1.4 billion.

Offshore staff

(South America) - India's Oil and Natural Gas Corp. (ONGC) has reportedly reached a tentative deal with ExxonMobil Corp. to buy its stake in an offshore block off Brazil's southeastern coast for $1.4 billion.

Exxon Mobil holds a 30% stake in the BC-10 offshore block in the Campos basin. The block has an estimated 400 MMbbl of oil reserves.

The deal cannot happen without the permission of Royal Dutch Shell PLC and Petrobras. Each has a 35 percent stake in the block, and both must approve the sale.

The sale is also subject to regulatory approval from the Brazilian government.

The proposed deal comes as part of the state-owned Indian company's efforts to acquire overseas energy assets to fuel the country's booming economy.

It would be the second acquisition by ONGC in Latin America in the past year.

In September, ONGC reached a deal with Spanish-Argentine oil company Repsol-YPF SA to acquire a 30%stake in seven deepwater blocks off Cuba in the GoM.

The Brazilian block is located about 75 mi from the city of Vitoria in Espirito Santo state in a water depth between 4,900 ft and 6,600 ft.

In December, four areas in the block were declared commercially viable by the developers.

Shell said in April that it may produce between 60,000 b/d and 100,000 b/d of crude from the block.

01/31/06

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