LA PAZ – The oil industry achieved “clear, very positive results” in 2015 despite the collapse in petroleum prices, the Bolivian government said Sunday.
Benchmark oil prices are used to set the price of exports, which mainly go to Brazil and Argentina.
“The unfavorable global situation has not substantially influenced the oil projects in Bolivia because we knew how to take political measures to deal with this situation,” Hydrocarbons and Energy Minister Luis Alberto Sanchez said in a statement.
Bolivia opened new markets in 2015 for gas exports and is moving toward a deal with Petroperu covering the distribution of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) in cities across southern Peru, the minister said.
State-owned oil company YPFB is bidding to build natural gas networks in Peru and “there are also negotiations” taking place in Paraguay, Sanchez said.
The first steps were also taken to negotiate an expansion of the gas sales contract with Brazil starting in 2019, the minister said.
New gas finds in Bolivia totaled about 1.5 trillion cubic meters in 2015, Sanchez said.
Bolivia, according to an official 2014 certification report, has proven natural gas reserves of 10.45 trillion cubic meters, allowing production to continue at the current rate until 2023.
The Andean nation produces about 62 million cubic meters per day of natural gas, of which about half is exported to Brazil and 16 million cubic meters per day go to Argentina.