In a decisive move to expand its international presence, Qatar Petroleum (QP) has signed an agreement with Exxon Mobil, the world’s largest publicly traded oil company to buy stakes in two of Exxon’s Argentine affiliates for access to oil and gas shale resources in the country.
Sources confirm that QP will acquire a 30% share in ExxonMobil Exploration Argentina S.R.L. and Mobil Argentina S.A. thus commencing QP’s first investment in Argentina and strengthening its position as the world’s biggest Liquified Natural Gas supplier. QP’s Chief Executive Officer Saad Al-Kaabi expressed his delight and stated that this move is the company’s first major international investment in unconventional gas resources, though he did not reveal the deal amount.
As per records, the principal regions in Argentina for survey with reference to the above agreement are blocks in Vaca Muerta in the Neuquen basin. These zones are under unconventional exploration licenses as well as exploitation licenses with pilot drilling and production.
Exxon’s CEO Darren Woods welcomed the agreement and citied it as a significant step towards expanding the company’s upstream operations with Exxon currently having fewer promising international projects than other players in the oil and gas industry.
The deal has also offered QP long term access to gas assets in South America for tapping in when its own resources get depleted in addition to presenting an opportunity to QP for making its first substantial investment in shale operations.
The agreement is seemingly important to QP in terms of demonstrating its position alongside top players in oil and gas market despite the political crisis back home. According to sources, most of the Gulf countries are alleging that Qatar supports terrorist activities and have been pressurizing other governments to economically and politically boycott on the nation.
Saab Al-Kaabi went on record to say that this predicament has not impacted their market or their expansion plans. The new agreement with Exxon will enable QP to boost LNG production from 77 million tons to 100 million tons per year, he says.