Argentina offers favourable investment opportunities in the upstream sector. A historical lack of investment means the country is now reliant on imported gas to feed its growing economy. The country is opening itself to foreign investment in a bid to replace reserves and halt the decline in domestic production.
Echo Key Statistics
Argentina's gas industry began in the 1960's and has developed the country into a gas-intensive economy where 50% of its primary energy demand is now met by natural gas (BP Statistical Review of World Energy, 2017). Declining costs of credit default swaps (Reuters, 2017) related to an improving political and fiscal environment, only add to the attractiveness of the region.
Growing Gas Economy
- Largest gas consumer in South America: 1.75 Tcf of natural gas consumed in 2016 (BP Statistical Review of World Energy, 2017)
- Consumption growing by circa 1.7% p.a. (2006-16)
- Production in decline by circa 1.9% p.a. (2006-16)
- Under-utilised gas pipeline in excess of 17,000 km
- Export capacity to Chile
Unsustainable Energy Supply
- Reliant on gas imports for 22.9% of consumption (BP Statistical Review of World Energy, 2017)
- Expensive LNG comprises 46.2% of imports (BP Statistical Review of World Energy, 2017)
- Plans to end LNG imports within 5 years
Argentina Natural Gas Trade Balance History
Source: IAPG (2015) and BP Statistical Review of World Energy (2017)
CGC - Compañía General de Combustibles S.A.
CGC is a major Argentinian-based upstream to midstream oil and gas company and a privately owned subsidiary of the Argentinian conglomerate Corporación América International.
CGC holds significant interest in the transport of natural gas and our partner across the Tapi Aike licence block within Argentina, in which Echo holds a 19% interest and CGC the remaining 81% interest.
Austral Basin Focus
The Austral Basin is located in southern Argentina, across the provinces of Santa Cruz and Tierra del Fuego, and extends into Chile. It covers an area of around 200,000 square kilometers, from the Andes mountains in the west to the Atlantic Ocean in the east.
The Austral basin holds approximately 34% of Argentina's natural gas reserves at approximately 4.27 trillion cubic feet (IAPG, 2015). The basin's geological history has provided a diversity of proven exploration play types of Jurassic, Cretaceous and Cenozoic age. These provide multi-Tcf potential and are the focus of our exploration work programme.
Much of the present-day surface topography is largely flat, barren and sparsely populated, providing excellent conditions to undertake hydrocarbon exploration.
Austral Gas Resources
Source: IAPG (2015)
Source: Rossello et al. (2006)