November 7, 2019 / 11:53 AM / 3 months ago

Brazil optimistic about oil blocks auction -officials

RIO DE JANEIRO, Nov 7 (Reuters) - Brazil has increased its optimism regarding the five pre-salt oil blocks it will offer at auction on Thursday after a round on Wednesday failed to attract large oil companies, government officials said.

The government expects offers in all areas where state-run Petrobras has already exercised preference rights, said Brazilian subsecretary for oil and gas Renata Isfer.

She added that the most competition would likely be for the Aram oil block, the largest area up for auction on Thursday.

"We're not going to keep eternally auctioning billions of reais of pre-salt blocks," said Decio Oddone, the head of oil regulator ANP. "We will start a new phase of developing sold assets."

He added that Thursday's round would be one of the last major pre-salt oil auctions in Brazil.

Reporting by Rodrigo Viga Gaier and Marta Nogueira; editing by Jason Neely

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