Ecopetrol triples heavy crude output from 2003-08

Colombian state oil company Ecopetrol tripled its heavy crude production from 2003-08. The company produced an average of 98,000b/d of heavy crude in 2007 and passed the 110,000b/d mark in January 2008. Ecopetrol, meanwhile, plans to average 121,000b/d of heavy crude production in 2008, with the figure rising to 170,000b/d by 2011.

Ecopetrol has its sights on the upcoming heavy crude rounds in Colombia and the company will compete with public and private majors and juniors for the blocks. A total of US$2.8bn will be spent to increase production at Ecopetrols heavy crude blocks and US$2.37bn to upgrade the Barrancabermeja refinery that processes heavy crude.

An additional US$658mn will be spent to increase transport infrastructure. Increased transit infrastructure is expected greatly to improve the economic feasibility of heavy crude. While heavy crude can be produced for around US$3/b, trucking prices can reach over US$10/b where no pipeline infrastructure exists.

Publication: Euclid Infotech - Utilities News
Provider: Euclid Infotech
Date: February 13, 2008


EPM only has eyes for Chile

Empresas Publicas de Medellin (EPM) is set on generating and distributing energy in Chile with local and foreign partners. The Colombian group has signed a confidentiality clause regarding the plans it has but it would seem that EPM is thinking of 500 MW at a cost of US$700mil.

The project is expected to take shape midway through 2008, according to Sub-Gerente de Nuevos Negocios en Energia at EPM, Alejandro Jose Jaramillo. EPM is also considering bidding for Chilean holding company Saesa, put up for sale by PSEG of the US. The investment bank Credit Suisse has delivered a preliminary prospectus for the sale of assets in Saesa and, in two weeks' time, it will present the definitive version. Saesa has 640,000 clients and 118 MW of installed capacity in Chile. It is expected to sell for around US$700mil.

Publication: SABI - Business News
Provider: South American Business Information
Date: February 11, 2008

Fogel Andina gets started in the Valley del Cauca

Colombia's Valley del Cauca is to serve as an export platform for the firm Fogel Andina, a producer of refrigeration equipment new to the nation. Fogel has invested US$5mil in its production plant in the Zona Franca del Pacifico. It aims to produce 10,000 fridges and freezers in year one, having set up in Colombia to reduce its sales costs in the region (also including Ecuador, Venezuela and Peru).

Its leading local client is the (now multinational) Bavaria-SabMiller, the two firms first having worked together a few years back in Guatemala. Andres Sinisterra, Fogel Andina director, states that the aim is to post a turnover of around US$9mil in year one, 50% stemming from exports.

Publication: SABI - Business News
Provider: South American Business Information
Date: February 11, 2008