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Last updated on April 18, 2014 at 8:42 EDT

Ecopetrol Submits Top Bids for 12 Blocks in Round Colombia 2012

October 18, 2012

BOGOTA, Colombia, Oct. 18, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Ecopetrol S.A. (BVC: ECOPETROL; NYSE: EC; TSX: ECP) reports that it has submitted the best offers for 12 exploratory blocks in the Round Colombia 2012, following the opening of bidding held yesterday by the National Hydrocarbons Agency (Agencia Nacional de Hidrocarburos, ANH) in Cartagena, Colombia.

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Of the 12 blocks, Ecopetrol holds a 100% stake in six of them, and the remaining six in partnerships with Anadarko, ExxonMobil, Repsol, and Hocol. The total area of the blocks is approximately 3.1 million hectares and are located in the following basins: Llanos, Mid Magdalena Valley, Caguan-Putumayo, Catatumbo, Cordillera, and the Colombian Caribbean offshore.

In this round, the ANH auctioned blocks for exploration and production of unconventional hydrocarbons. Ecopetrol has carried out activities in this type of hydrocarbons, and yesterday’s bidding should allow it to increase its strategic position in five new blocks. Ecopetrol holds a 100% stake in three blocks, and two of the blocks are held in partnership with ExxonMobil.

In conventional hydrocarbons, Ecopetrol submitted the top bid for seven blocks. In two of them, it holds a 100% interest, and in the other five, it holds jointly with Anadarko (two blocks), ExxonMobil (one block), Repsol (one block), and Hocol (one block), the latter a company of the Ecopetrol Corporate Group.

One of the two blocks in the Caribbean Offshore is held in partnership with Anadarko Colombia Company while the other is held in partnership with Repsol Exploracion Colombia S.A. These alliances with oil companies that have a broad experience in offshore exploration and production, are part of Ecopetrol S.A.’s strategy of strengthening its presence in this basin.

Ecopetrol’s investment in these 12 blocks is estimated at US$370 million during the initial phase of exploration over the next three years, which includes the minimum mandatory commitments and the additional investment offered in the round.

Following the verification of documents and analysis of the information submitted by the companies, the ANH expects to award the blocks on November 26, followed by the signing of contracts between November 27 and December 21 of 2012.

We expect the results obtained in Round Colombia 2012 to strengthen Ecopetrol’s strategic position, and to signal that major oil companies have confidence in Ecopetrol, which should contribute to our strategy that aims at increasing reserves and achieving production of 1.3 million by 2020.

The following is a summary of the 12 blocks:


                                     Share      Expected
     Block    Basin   Companies       of       Additional   Type of Block
                                  Production   Investment
                                     ANH          (US$
                                                       (%)       million)
                                                            Type 2 -
                                                            Conventional
                      Ecopetrol                             Continental
     PUT13     PUT      S.A.               7%        $1.6   and Offshore
                                                            Type 2 -
                          UT                                Conventional
                      Anadarko                              Continental
      URA4     URA    Ecopetrol            3%        $0.6   and Offshore
                                                            Type 3 -
               CAG                                          Conventional
                -     Ecopetrol                             Continental
     PUT17     PUT      S.A.               1%       $31.8   and Offshore
                                                            Type 3 -
                                                            Conventional
                        UT EM                               Continental
     COR46     COR      - ECP              1%       $55.1   and Offshore
                                                            Type 3 -
                          UT                                Conventional
                      Ecopetrol                             Continental
      AMA4     AMA      Hocol              1%       $43.7   and Offshore
                                                            Type 3 -
                          UT                                Conventional
                      Anadarko                              Continental
      COL5     COL    Ecopetrol            1%       $11.5   and Offshore
                                                            Type 3 -
                          UT                                Conventional
               GUA      Repsol                              Continental
    GUAOFF1    OFF    Ecopetrol            1%       $28.5   and Offshore
                                                            Type 2 -
                      Ecopetrol                             Unconventional
      CAT3     CAT      S.A.               1%        $3.0   Continental
                                                            Type 2 -
                        UT ECP                              Unconventional
     COR62     COR      - EM               1%       $22.1   Continental
                                                            Type 2 -
                      Ecopetrol                             Unconventional
      VMM5     VMM      S.A.               1%       $11.8   Continental
                                                            Type 2 -
                      Ecopetrol                             Unconventional
     VMM16     VMM      S.A.               1%        $6.0   Continental
     -----     ---    ---------      ---             ----   --------------
                                                            Type 2 -
                        UT ECP                              Unconventional
     VMM29     VMM      - EM               1%        $3.5   Continental
     -----     ---     -------       ---             ----  ---------------

Cartagena, Colombia, October 18 of 2012
——————————————

Ecopetrol is Colombia’s largest integrated oil & gas company, where it accounts for 60% of total production. It is one of the top 50 oil companies in the world and the fourth largest oil company in Latin America. The Company is also involved in exploration and production activities in Brazil, Peru and the United States Gulf Coast, and owns the main refineries in Colombia, most of the network of oil and multiple purpose pipelines in the country, petrochemical plants, and is entering into the biofuels business.

This release contains forward-looking statements relating to the prospects of the business, estimates for operating and financial results, and those related to growth prospects of Ecopetrol. These are merely projections and, as such, are based exclusively on the expectations of management concerning the future of the business and its continued access to capital to fund the Company’s business plan. Such forward-looking statements depend, substantially, on changes in market conditions, government regulations, competitive pressures, the performance of the Colombian economy and the industry, among other factors; therefore, they are subject to change without prior notice.

Contact us for any additional information:

Investor Relations
Alejandro Giraldo
Phone: +571-234-5190
Email: investors@ecopetrol.com.co

Media Relations (Colombia)
Mauricio Tellez
Phone: + 571-2345377
Fax: +571-2344480
Email: mtellez@ecopetrol.com.co

SOURCE Ecopetrol S.A.


Source: PR Newswire