PDVSA, Repsol discuss $1.2 bln funding for Venezuela venture


By Deisy Buitrago

CARACAS, Oct 16 (Reuters) - State oil company PDVSA andSpain's Repsol are discussing a $1.2 billion financingdeal for a joint venture in Venezuela, a top government officialsaid on Wednesday.

The announcement was made by Petroleum Minister RafaelRamirez during a visit to Caracas by Repsol boss Antonio Brufau.The funds would go to the Petroquiriquire joint venture, whichruns mature oil fields in the east and west of the SouthAmerican OPEC member country.

Ramirez said the financing was aimed at increasing the jointventure's output by 75,000 barrels per day (bpd), from a totalof about 40,000 bpd currently produced at its three fields.

If signed, the new deal would add to about $10 billion inloans that PDVSA has agreed this year, including with Chevron and Schlumberger of the United States andChina's CNPC, as it seeks to boost stagnant national oil outputof some 3 million bpd.

Repsol is working with PDVSA in an offshore natural gasproject and is a key part of a consortium seeking to tapVenezuela's vast Orinoco extra heavy crude belt.

Separately, the minister said he would also be discussingfinancing with visiting executives from Italy's ENI inNovember for their joint ventures.

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