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Repsol YPF SA Message Board

  • spx1700 spx1700 Feb 8, 2012 6:41 PM Flag


    Forecast for potential resources hiked to 22.81 barrels

    * Fields resources estimated at nearly 1 billion in November (Recasts, updates with estimate increase)

    BUENOS AIRES, Feb 8 (Reuters) - Argentine energy company YPF, the local affiliate of Spain's Repsol , on Wednesday raised its estimate for possible shale oil and gas resources at the Vaca Muerta field to 22.8 billion barrels.

    The energy company, which said in November it had found almost a billion barrels of non-conventional energy resources at the Patagonian field, is under pressure from the government to boost investment in production.

    In a 1,100-kilometer square area explored, the company said it had identified estimated contingent resources of 1.525 billion barrels of oil equivalent in the area, Wednesday's statement said.

    "If the exploration in the whole Vaca Muerta area is successful, and intense development work starts immediately, in 10 years Argentina's current oil and gas production capacity could be doubled," the statement said.

    However, it said such a project would require "an enormous investment effort" that would reach an estimated $25 billion per year to develop all the potential resources.

    YPF, which has a market value of approximately $15 billion, said it would require capital from Argentina and foreign credit markets.

    Its shares jumped nearly 7 percent in late afternoon trade after the resources boost was announced in a filing to Buenos Aires stock exchange.

    According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, Argentina's proved petroleum reserves in 2009 totaled 2.62 billion barrels.

    Due to fast-growing demand, the country has been forced to import more fuel to meet its needs in recent years and critics blame government intervention in the market and political uncertainty for discouraging investment in exploration.

    YPF started work to develop unconventional energy resources in Argentina in 2007, announcing the first results last year with the shale gas find at Loma La Lata.

    Soon after that discovery, a U.S. Department of Energy report showed that Argentina holds more natural gas trapped in shale rock than all of Europe does - a 774-trillion-cubic-feet bounty that could transform the outlook for Western Hemisphere supply

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22.035Oct 29 3:59 PMEDT

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