Brazil: Multi-national consortium wins offshore production rights amid protests

News & Insights
Oct 22, 2013
A consortium made up of Brazil’s state-run oil firm Petrobras, Shell, Total, and Chinese companies CNPC and CNOOC has won a production license for the offshore Libra oilfield. The 35-year license to the deep-sea field–which is thought to be rich enough to potentially double Brazil’s oil reserves–was auctioned off by Brazil’s National Petroleum Agency. The consortium was the only bidder at the auction, and was thus able to secure the license with the minimum possible bid, the BCC reported. The auction, held at a beachfront hotel in Rio de Janero, drew large protests from striking oil workers and others who have accused the government of selling off the nation’s wealth. Hundreds of riot police clashed with protesters on the streets and beaches around the hotel. Protesters also marched to Petrobras’ headquarters following the auction, according to Al Jazeera.