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Jaguar X6 well drilling exceeds 5,000 meters

On May 21, 2018, Anglo-Dutch operator Shell Bolivia began drilling the Jaguar X6 well, which is part of the Huacareta block in the department of Tarija, with an investment of US$109.4 million. Currently, there are more than 5,000 meters of drilling, and it will be more than 6,000 meters deep. Shell estimates that there can be a success in exploration.

Airlines and tourism foresee a negative impact on operations due to coronavirus

The state policy announced by President Jeanine Añez to temporarily suspend commercial air operations to and from Europe due to coronavirus is shaking up national and international air operators and tourism agents who foresee a substantial impact on their business. BoA had an annual schedule of approximately 150 flights to Madrid and total ticket sales on that route worth $US 12 million.

YPFB considers investment proposal of $34.5 mn for Tarija

The Tarija Gas Company (Emtagas) presented to YPFB an Investment Plan that exceeds bs 240 million ($34.5 mn) for the distribution of natural gas through networks in the department of Tarija. To this end, an agreement was signed this Thursday between Emtagas, the Ministry of Hydrocarbons, YPFB and the Departmental Autonomous Government.

2% of the banks’ profits will be used to cover losses

The Government decided to adjust the distribution of the guarantee funds and stipulated that 2% of the profits of the financial system should be used to cover losses on social and productive housing loans. At December 31, 2019, the financial intermediation system recorded benefits of Bs 2,287 million ($328.59 mn). With the resources, the financial system will generate new credits of $300 million for social housing and $120 million for productive housing.

Contract signed for $17.52 mn for southern corridor

Hydrocarbon exploration in the San Telmo and Astillero areas, inside the Tariquía National Flora and Fauna Reserve, will not continue. However, to date, there are no plans to cancel the contracts signed with the operators YPFB Chaco and Petrobras Bolivia, which contemplate an investment of $682 million.

El Mutún’s $440 mn steel project is stalled

In 2016, the Chinese company Sinosteel Equipment awarded the El Mutún steel project, a 40 billion tonne iron deposit, for $440 million, financed by China’s Eximbank, to which the Bolivian State has already paid $6 million in interest. Sinosteel received $108.8 million from the previous Government for the award, and the supervising company earned $4.5 million. The Government has reported that to date there is not even 5% progress and the Chinese company did not deliver the final engineering design of the seven steel plants.

Moody’s downgrades Bolivia’s ratings to B1, changes outlook to negative

Moody’s Investors Service (“Moody’s”) has downgraded the Government of Bolivia’s local and foreign currency issuer and senior unsecured debt ratings to B1 from Ba3, and changed the outlook to negative, concluding the review for downgrade that was initiated on 5 December 2019. The decision to downgrade Bolivia’s ratings reflects the material erosion of the country’s fiscal and foreign exchange reserve buffers in recent years.

State contracts worth more than $1.11bn to be audited

Contracts between the State and Venezuelan businessman Carlos Gill worth more $1.11 billion will be audited. The audit will cover a radar acquisition contract awarded to Thales Air System ($227 million); a contract for the installation of 22 satellite re-gasification stations ($137 million); and a contract for the provision of services to Mi Teleférico, for more than $718.39 million. The three contracts were directly awarded.