Vaca Muerta, the biggest shale play in Argentina, led a year-on-year increase in oil and natural gas production in 2018 in Neuquen, as more companies bet on the resources for growth in the southwestern province.
Argentina's state-run energy company YPF and Malaysia's Petronas agreed this week to invest US$ 2.3 billion in a shale oil project in Vaca Muerta, with a target of reaching 60,000 b/d of oil equivalent by 2022. The investment will be in La Amarga Chica, where the companies have been testing the shale oil potential since 2015 and have spent US$ 550 million to date in the process, YPF said in a statement.
Argentina's energy company YPF said on Monday its 2018 hydrocarbon production likely will fall by 3% to 4% on the year, more than previously expected, as low natural gas demand forces it to close wells and shift its focus to Vaca Muerta shale oil.
Oil prices rose early on Monday ahead of a meeting between OPEC and U.S. shale firms in Houston, raising expectations that oil producers would discuss further how to clear a global oil glut. Oil ministers from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and other global oil players are set to gather in Houston as CERAWeek, the largest energy industry conference, begins on Monday.
By Nick Cunningham of Oilprice.com
Echoing the criticism of too much hype surrounding U.S. shale from the Saudi oil minister, a new report finds that shale drilling is still largely not profitable. Not only that, but costs are on the rise and drillers are pursuing irrational production.