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Brazilian Senate to Submit a Bill Revoking Petrobras Mandatory Operatorship on Pre-Salt Fields

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The Brazilian Senate is working on the Senate Bill 131/2015, which revokes Petrobras’ mandatory role as the exclusive operator on all pre-salt developments under the production sharing regime, where consortia of companies have been formed for exploration and production purposes.

Senator José Serra of Opposition Party PSDB, has authored SB 131/2015, which will be submitted to the review and tentative amendments by a congressional legal panel soon.

Senator Serra has justified the bill on the grounds that, “It is inconceivable that the exploration of a natural resource of the highest relevance to Brazil be subject to an irreparable delay arising from problems with the sole operator of the pre-salt developments”.

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Senator José Serra, of the oppostion party PSDB. Image credit: Petronotícias

The current law, enacted in 2010, sets forth that Petrobras holds a mandatory 30% share and the operatorship on all pre-salt developments, as well as mandates that Petrobras is responsible for all direct or indirect execution and management of all exploration, production, appraisal and development activities.

To support his bill, Senator Serra has expressed concerns on the consequences of the graft investigations by the Federal Police Department, which are causing delays, cancellations and disarray amid Petrobras, ultimately compromising the much-needed pre-salt exploration.

The toll on the debilitated oil major may seriously compromise its US$ 220.6 billion plan until 2018.

Passing the bill requires clearance not only by the congressional legal panel, but also by infrastructure and economical panels, to open the door for the final approval and further signing the bill into law.

This post originates from reports by Petronotícias.

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