Petrobras divests Colombia assets to raise funds

By Marc Castro

Sep 14, 2013 05:01 AM EDT

The publicly traded oil company which is recognized as the most deeply in debt, Petroleiro Brasileiro SA, had agreed to sell off oil blocks together with pipelines located in Colombia. The buyer is Perenco UK Ltd and the sale was worth USD380 million.

In a regulatory filing, Petrobras stated, "The Petrobras Colombia assets that are part of the transaction include 11 onshore exploration and production blocks with an average production of 6,350 barrels of oil equivalent per day, as well as the Colombia and Alto Magdalena pipelines." The sale is still subject to the approval of Colombia's oil regulatory authority.

The divestment is part of the program of Petrobras to finance the development of the so-called pre-salt oil reserves that was recently discovered under the Brazilian seabed. The South American oil firm had already sold stakes in its African business to Grupo BTG Pactual worth USD1.5 billion last month. The funds would be spent, together with about 60% of its USD237 billion five year business plan for exploration, extraction and production of oil from the pre-salt area.

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