YPF, Chevron discuss shared Argentina strategies

August 24, 2012 

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) - Argentina's state-controlled oil company and California-based Chevron Corp. held a high-level strategy session Friday to discuss how they might work together to develop the world's third-largest unconventional oil and gas reserves.

YPF CEO Miguel Galuccio called his meeting with Chevron's Latin America chief, Ali Moshiri, the first step toward a strategic alliance with Chevron, which is Latin America's leading private energy investor. He said YPF needs partners with Chevron's power and experience to develop Argentina's shale reserves, which trail only the U.S. and China in potential.

"We discussed various alternatives for cooperation in concrete terms. Chevron is very interested in developing joint ventures, and we need partners with the weight and experience of a company of this size," Galuccio said after the meeting at YPF's headquarters.

Their encounter did not lead to any specific investment news, but it sets the stage for Galuccio's formal presentation next Thursday of a five-year plan for the company that Argentina expropriated from Spain's Grupo Repsol earlier this year.

Since taking charge May 7, Galuccio has insisted on the need for YPF to find deep-pocketed partners willing to make long-term bets on developing Argentina's energy potential.

But big international oil companies have held back on major new investment in Argentina, where the government recently announced an elaborate system of price controls for the oil and gas industry and also has so far denied Spain's demands for $10 billion in compensation for the controlling YPF stake seized from Repsol.

"We have the natural resources, the human capital and the technological and operational capacity. We are, after China and the U.S., the country with the third-greatest shale potential in the world. We just need to open the door to the future," he said.

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