Through a decree, the Government established until December 31 a local crude oil value of US $ 45 -the so-called “Creole barrel” – under the argument of reviving the national hydrocarbon industry and guaranteeing the continuity of jobs.
Measure was long claimed by the governors -the provinces charge royalties for oil extraction and the higher its value the more they receive- and also for oil unions, such as Neuquén, Río Negro and La Pampa.
As reported Clarion This Monday, the official decision places the price of Argentine oil above the international price. The Brent variety -which is the world reference, used in Argentina- was this Tuesday at around US $ 34.50, that is to say less than $ 10 than Creole.
The setting of a higher value was claimed by the governors of the hydrocarbon provinces, the oil-producing companies – one of those who pushed the decree the most was Miguel Galuccio, the owner of the Vista oil company and former YPF head under the presidency of Cristina Kirchner– and the Patagonian oil guilds, which feared for the loss of jobs because with crude less than US $ 35, companies do not find it “business” to make new drilling.
“The decree is perfect“, said to Clarion Guillermo Pereyra, Secretary General of the Oil Tankers Guild of Neuquén, La Pampa and Río Negro. “Argentina is now oblivious to changes in the value of crude oil due to the fights between the United States and Russia and what Saudi Arabia is doing. It was important to have a support price for the activity “added the unionist.
Pereyra also observed that “in this there are conflicting interests and that is why it took so long for the decree to be issued. There were many conflicting positions.”
And yes, there are conflicting positions. Even in the guild universe itself. The decree opened a crack between unions.
The Argentine Federation of Oil, Gas and Biofuels Union (FASiPeGyBio), which represents, among others, the 5,000 workers of the refineries in the country, was left on “alert” status after the decree was known.
“Refineries are forced to buy the world’s most expensive oil “, said the treasurer of the Federation, Gabriel Matarazzo. “I do not want to appear as a lobbyist for companies, but here the only ones who clearly benefit are the provinces. This decree can have very negative consequences for our activity.”
According to Matarazzo, by raising the raw material to the refiners they could paralyze their activity or “readjust their number of personnel. This they did creates fear.”
The unionist does not claim that a value of the Creole barrel has been set, but rather that “Some action should now be taken to compensate the refiners. “
“The government looked at the situation in one sector and should now look at the other,” added Matarazzo.
A well working in the Loma Campana field in Neuquén, in Vaca Muerta.
In its article 3, the decree establishes that “during the term of the measure, the refining companies must acquire the total demand for crude oil from local producing companies.” In Creole: they will not be able to bring cheaper oil from abroad.
In Argentina there are 8 refiners, distributed in Luján de Cuyo (YPF); La Plata (YPF); Plaza Huincul (YPF); Bahía Blanca (Trafigura, owner of the Puma Energy brand); Dock Sud (Raizen, Shell operator); Bell (Axion); May 25 (Refipampa); and Salta (Refinor).
Due to the drop in fuel consumption, the refineries are working at half a machine.