The first new generation oil well has been launched in the world's most oil-rich area. The oil well is operated by U.S. company Chevron and Venezuelan state oil company PVDSA. The well is the first of 17 wells planned for start-up. These wells are located in Venezuela's Orinoco oil belt.

The collaboration between US oil giant Chevron and Venezuelan oil company PDVSA has begun to bear fruit. "Petroindependencia, a joint venture between PDVSA and Chevron, has spudded the first of 17 oil wells scheduled to be installed this year as part of the 2024 drilling plan, the Venezuelan state-owned company said in a press release Wednesday. Petroleum of Venezuela (PDVSA) is trying to revive production in the Caribbean country with the help of private oil giant Chevron. It aims to end the decline of Venezuela's oil industry, which easily produced more than two million barrels a day in the early 2000s. Now Venezuela is struggling to at least reach the 800,000 barrels per day level.

Last February, the rig began work in the Orinoco oil belt - a vast area in the east of the country where the largest oil reserves are concentrated - under an operational plan developed by the joint venture, one of the measures to increase national oil production, according to a PDVSA statement. Venezuela is known to be the country with the largest proven oil reserves in the world. Proved reserves are the estimated amount of oil that can be extracted with reasonable certainty at present, both commercially and technically. Venezuela's proven oil reserves are 300.878 billion barrels, the largest in the world. Curiously, however, 90% of all these reserves are located in a stretch of land (it's a big stretch) known as the Orinoco Oil Belt (FPO).

Chevron launches oil well in Venezuela

Pilar Martinez says, "We have an aging sector and we need to promote a different agrarian model." The Orinoco Oil Belt (FPO) holds 279,117 million barrels of crude oil. To understand the scale of oil reserves in the FPO, one only needs to look at the official Saudi proven reserves figures and compare them. The world's largest oil exporter (Saudi Arabia) has proven reserves of 266 billion barrels in the bowels of the earth. The US, for example, has barely 40 billion barrels despite being the world's largest producer. FPO reserves far exceed these figures.

The U.S. Geological Survey explained in its report on the area that the area, which does contain large quantities of hydrocarbons, covers about 50,000 km2 of Venezuela's Eastern Basin Province and contains hundreds of billions of barrels of oil, although recoverable are the 279 billion barrels mentioned above, which are proven reserves.

Chevron and PDVSA's first oil well

It is noted that the launch of the well represents an important milestone in increasing the production of this joint venture and reaffirms the commitment to help revitalize the Caribbean country's main industry, whose oil pumping grew 9.3% last year compared to 2022, to an average of 783,000 barrels per day. The CMI14 well is the first of 17 new generation wells planned in this year's business plan," the company said in a statement. These next-generation oil wells use more technology, are more efficient, reduce the risk of spills and, above all, are able to recover a greater percentage of oil reserves through various systems that sometimes go beyond vertical drilling.

Venezuela is looking to capitalize on the just-emerging technology of a leading company in the sector, such as Chevron, to revitalize oil production in a country that was once South America's largest oil producer. Currently, the oil throne in the region is undisputedly held by Brazil, which produces more than 3 million barrels of oil per day thanks to deepwater oil production.


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