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Equinor, Shell join YPF in Bandurria Sur block, Argentina

Equinor and its partner Royal Dutch Shell have wrapped up a joint acquisition of the 49% stake held by Schlumberger in the onshore Bandurria Sur block in the Argentine province Neuquén.

Each partner paid $177.5 million for their 24.5% interest in the Argentine onshore block, which spans nearly 56,000 gross acres in the central area of the Vaca Muerta play.

The operator of the Bandurria Sur block is Argentine energy company YPF, which currently has 51% stake. The hydrocarbon block in Argentina is in the late pilot phase of development having a current production of nearly 10,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day.

In a separate development, Equinor and Shell have also arrived at a preliminary agreement with YPF to acquire an additional 11% stake in the Bandurria Sur block from the Argentine energy company.

Production at the Bandurria Sur block in the Vaca Muerta play

Production at the Bandurria Sur block in the Vaca Muerta play. Photo courtesy of YPF.

Upon completion of the additional transaction, which is subject to various conditions including authority approval, Equinor and Shell will each own a 30% non-operated stake in the onshore hydrocarbon block in Argentina, while YPF will own the remaining 40% stake and will continue as an operator.

Nidia Álvarez Crogh – Equinor country manager for Argentina said: “We are very pleased to partner with Shell in the Bandurria Sur block, an asset in an area with significant potential, and to further develop our close partnership with YPF, with whom we are already exploring several onshore, offshore and renewable opportunities in Argentina.

“We are broadening our activities in Argentina in support of our strategy to build international growth options.”

Following the completed deal, a former subsidiary of Schlumberger, which held a 49% stake in the Bandurria Sur block, is now owned equally by Equinor and Shell.

Equinor is engaged in eight offshore blocks in Argentina, of which it is an operator in six of them.

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