Ecuador May Have to Import Crude Oil : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

Nando Times

QUITO, Ecuador (September 12, 2000 4:30 p.m. EDT - Ecuador's energy minister warned Tuesday that the nation - which has exported petroleum for the past 30 years - may have to begin importing crude oil if at least $1 billion is not invested in the country's oil fields.

"Unfortunately, if we don't invest a great deal of money, between $1 billion and $1.5 billion, in the country's five largest fields, we run the risk of losing the reserves in those fields forever," Pablo Teran said in a television interview.

He said the government does not have funds available for the expenditure, adding that the only solution was private investment.

If production continues to decline in the fields - Sacha, Shushufindi, Auca, Cononaco and Libertador - as it has over the last seven or eight years, "Ecuador will ... become an oil importer in four years," Teran said.

The five oil fields yield about 180,000 barrels per day out of a total 310,000 barrels produced daily in the country.

Revenues from oil exports, which average 246,000 barrels a day, account for 43 percent of Ecuador's fiscal budget.

Teran called on a private sector alliance "to help us boost production in our fields, which have been declining by 7 to 8 percent yearly."

He said private investment was crucial for the extraction of 1.5 billion barrels of reserves from the five fields that otherwise would remain untouched.

-- Rachel Gibson (, September 12, 2000


This is the tip of the iceberg of the world-wide oil supply problem - still another oil exporting country is admitting that it has a big problem.

-- Wellesley (, September 12, 2000.

A game of dominoes, anyone? This sounds like y2k all over again.

-- Uncle Fred (, September 12, 2000.

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