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By: Pablo Rosendo Gonzalez & Joe Carroll
Exxon Mobil Corp. may invest more than $10 billion as it transplants the U.S. shale-drilling model to Argentina’s Vaca Muerta region in the next few decades, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Rex Tillerson said Thursday.
The oil giant has so far invested $200 million in the world’s second-largest shale gas deposit and plans to invest another $250 million in coming months on a pilot project, Tillerson said after meeting with Argentine President Mauricio Macri in Buenos Aires.
Unlike the mega-projects that have been Exxon’s hallmark for more than half a century, the shale developments the company began pursuing in 2010 have involved drilling hundreds of individual wells and installing thousands of miles of pipes to squeeze crude and natural gas from deep, dense, onshore fields.
If the pilot project is successful, the company will start full development during a period of 20 to 30 years that could involve additional investment “that would be well in excess of $10 billion,” he said.
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