State-owned oil company YPF has reactivated the trans-Andean oil pipeline, allowing Argentina to export oil to Chile for the first time in 17 years.
The oil pipeline, which extends over 427 kilometers, will be used to transport oil from the Vaca Muerta shale oil and gas field.
“Exporting oil to Chile shows the value of Vaca Muerta as an engine for Argentine growth,” Energy Secretary Flavia Royón said.
In this stage, set to last for 45 days, Argentina will sell some 41,000 barrels a day for a daily income of US$2-2.5 million. Customs sources calculated a monthly income of US$86 million to Argentina and reported that the line filling has already started.
According to Customs sources, the Argentine branches of YPF, Equinor, Petronas, Shell and Vista Energy have already submitted documentation to begin exporting and will pay the corresponding exportation duties.
“In this development process we now have almost 365 days of uninterrupted gas exports to Chile, as well as crude oil exports,” Royón added. “Argentine refineries are fully supplied and this allows us to export crude oil and for that, in addition to the Trans-Andean Pipeline, there is a private investment already committed in different pipelines to increase transportation capacity and be able to generate foreign currency in the energy sector.”
In an official press release, Chile’s National Oil Company (ENAP, its Spanish acronym), which signed the export deal with YPF last week, said that the operation “is the first step towards a long term energy and oil interconnection between both countries.”