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Total to triple production at its venezuela's Yucal Placer natural gas field


PARIS, July 10, 

French oil major Total said on Monday it would boost capacity later this year at the Yucal Placer gas field in Venezuela as part of a plan to triple its output by the end of 2014.

The Yucal Placer field, a project whose owners also include Spanish energy company Repsol YPF and Venezuela's Inepetrol and Otepi, came on stream in 2004.

Work on the new development phase of the field will start later this year to increase production to around 300 million cubic feet per day, or approximately 55,000 barrels of oil equivalent, by the end of 2014, Total said. That is three times its current production.

"With this new project, Total confirms its commitment to expanding its operations in Venezuela," it said in a statement.

A Total spokesman declined to say the value of the investment.

Venezuela has become the world's biggest holder of oil and gas reserves ahead of Saudi Arabia , according to BP statistics. Total's gas output in the country averaged 54,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day in 2011.

Total has a 69.5 percent interest in the Yucal Placer North and South licences, located in the central Guarico State.

It is also present in the Orinoco extra-heavy oil belt with a 30.3 percent stake in Petrocedeno, a joint venture with state oil company PDVSA and Norway's Statoil

President Hugo Chavez's government wants to develop natural gas production to meet growing domestic demand, which has forced Venezuela to import gas supplies from neighboring Colombia. 

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Story by Sybille de La Hamaide from Reuters

- Mon Jul 9, 2012 12:33pm EDT


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