RIO DE JANEIRO, Nov. 27 (Xinhua) -- The state-owned Brazilian oil company Petrobras announced Monday that production had begun at the Libra block in the pre-salt zone of the Santos oil field, and that it was working with its partners from China, as well as Shell and Total.
In a statement, Petrobras said production had begun Sunday at the Floating Production Storage & Offloading (FPSO) Pioneiro de Libra oil platform, which has the capacity to process up to 50,000 barrels of oil and 4 million cubic meters of associated petroleum gas a day.
At this time, the platform is carrying out long-term tests to evaluate the behavior of the oil reservoir, estimated to take about a year.
"Until now, 12 wells have been drilled in the Libra block. For its size, production potential, good oil quality and high commercial value, the Libra field opens a new business opportunity in the offshore industry," Petrobras said in the statement.
The Libra consortium is led by Petrobras, which owns 40 percent of the shares, while Shell and Total hold 20 percent each, and China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) and China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) hold 10 percent apiece.
The pre-salt area in the Atlantic sees around 50 percent of all Brazilian oil production, reaching 1.677 billion barrels of oil per day in September, 6.6 percent more than the production in August.