Brazil produced in May a daily average of 2,765 million barrels of oil, a volume 6.5% less than that registered in April due to the economic effects of the coronavirus pandemic, the regulatory body reported on Thursday.
Despite the drop in production compared to the immediately previous month, the South American power registered an increase of 1.3% in the year-on-year comparison.
According to the balance disclosed by the National Petroleum Agency (ANP, regulator), the production of natural gas, meanwhile, reached 114 million cubic meters per day, with a reduction of 7.8% compared to April and 3% in the comparison with the same month of 2019.
Adding the two hydrocarbons, the Brazilian production of oil and natural gas in April was 3.485 million barrels equivalent per day.
According to the ANP, in May the production of 34 fields was temporarily interrupted due to the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, of which 16 marine and 18 ashore, and a total of 60 marine facilities remained with interrupted production.
In April, there were 38 fields and 66 facilities with production interrupted for the same reason.
Brazil, with more than 61,000 deaths and 1.5 confirmed cases of coronavirus, is the second country in the world most affected by the pandemic, behind only the United States.
In the bulletin released this Thursday, the regulator pointed out that the pre-salt, the exploitation horizon discovered in very deep waters of the Atlantic Ocean, was responsible for 67.8% of the national oil and natural gas production in May.
The pre-salt is located under a two-kilometer-thick layer of salt and its gigantic reserves can make Brazil one of the world’s largest exporters of crude.
Brazil produced 2,363 million barrels of oil and natural gas equivalent in the pre-salt in May, representing a 9% decrease compared to April but a 12.2% increase compared to May last year.
Production in May in the 115 wells already drilled in the pre-salt was 1,875 million barrels per day of oil and 77.57 million cubic meters of natural gas per day.
The offshore wells were responsible for 96.5% of all Brazilian oil production and 86% of natural gas production.
By companies, Petrobras remained the leader and was responsible for 85.3% of Brazil’s hydrocarbon production in May.
ANP figures include production in the 270 areas that the different companies exploit under concession, of the two areas that were exclusively assigned to Petrobras and of five promising areas that are exploited through association agreements with the State.
The 34 companies that operate in the country do so in 212 land and 58 maritime areas, in which 6,905 wells have been drilled (492 maritime and 6,413 terrestrial).