Lima: Peru’s state oil company would be allowed to privatise up to 49 per cent of Petroperu through share offerings on the local stock market under a bill soon to be submitted to Congress, a top official said on Saturday.
Energy minister Jorge Merino told local radio the measure is aimed at modernising Petroperu and expanding its refining capacity.
“The bill would allow Petroperu to use private capital to increase efficiency and quality,” he told RPP radio.
A government source, who asked not to be named, said the bill was expected to be submitted to Congress early next week and that debate would be fast-tracked due to its high priority.
President Ollanta Humala’s coalition is strong enough to get most of his economic reform proposals through Congress.
Merino also said Petroperu plans to borrow an additional $3.5 billion to upgrade its flagship Talara refinery.
The project, scheduled for 2017, is aimed at increasing Talara output to 95,000 from 65,000 barrels per day, and helping Peru become a net energy producer.
Humala says he wants Petroperu, which has not produced significant amounts of oil in decades, to become a robust player like Brazil’s Petrobras.