Shell, encouraged by Brazil’s decision to open offshore projects to more private companies, announced a five-year plan to invest $10bn in the country’s oil sector, according to Reuters.
The Anglo-Dutch supermajor is particularly interested in drilling in the resource rich subsalt Polygon layer off Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro.
Brazil’s lower chamber of Congress has approved a bill that overturns a 2010 law requiring state-owned oil firm Petrobras to be the sole operator of projects in the subsalt with a minimum 30% stake in their development.
The aim of the bill, strongly backed by Brazil’s national president Michel Temer, is to boost private and foreign investment in the country’s oil sector.
Shell is already partnering Petrobras in the Libra field in the subsalt which is deep underwater below a thick layer of mineral salts.
This new investment is part of the firm’s strategy to double its deep-water production worldwide by the early 2020s.
Petrobras, rocked by a huge corruption scandal and riddled with debt, has just posted a huge third-quarter loss of $4.8bn.