Petrobras expands presence in Sao Tome & Principe offshore Africa 

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Petrobras, the Brazilian state oil producer, has acquired significant stakes in three offshore blocks in Sao Tome & Principe through a deal with Shell, marking its re-entry into African exploration.

Under this agreement, Petrobras secured a 45% interest in blocks 10 and 13, alongside a 25% stake in block 11. Shell remains the operator, retaining a 40% interest, while ANP-STP holds 15%, and Galp maintains a 20% interest in Block 11. These blocks are situated around the southern island of Sao Tome in Zone B. 

Petrobras said the move signifies its strategic objective to diversify its portfolio and bolster its oil and gas reserves through frontier exploration and collaborative ventures. 

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The decision to enter Sao Tome & Principe materialized following a memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed between Petrobras and Shell in March 2023 during CERAWeek. Petrobras said the collaboration extends beyond this recent acquisition, exemplified by their joint success in securing exploration blocks in the Pelotas Basin earlier this month.

Petrobras unveiled its new strategic plan, emphasizing the importance of reserve replenishment and the exploration of new frontiers to meet evolving energy needs while minimizing carbon footprints during the energy transition. The company is poised to allocate US$7.5 billion to exploration endeavors over the next five years, with a significant portion earmarked for international exploration, including its latest engagements in Sao Tome & Principe.

Petrobras is aiming to replicate the success of Guyana’s Stabroek block in the equatorial margin, although it opted out of exploration in Guyana opting not to participate in the country’s maiden bid round

Petrobras is instead eyeing exploration efforts in basins like Foz do Amazonas, Para-Maranhão, Barreirinhas, Ceará, and Potiguar. 

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