Bloomberg News

Camisea Gas Operators Seeking to Restructure Bank Loans

October 06, 2011

(Adds official’s comment in third paragraph.)

Oct. 6 (Bloomberg) -- Peru’s Camisea natural-gas project, led by Hunt Oil Co. and Pluspetrol SA, is seeking to restructure as much as $2 billion in bank loans after Peru asked it to set aside more gas for domestic usage, a government official said.

The government “won’t change its stance” on demanding the group reserve 2.5 trillion cubic feet of gas for local petrochemicals and power plant projects, instead of allowing it to be exported, when talks resume later this month, said Aurelio Ochoa, president of state oil contracting agency Perupetro.

“Talks to replace the reserves as a financial guarantee are ongoing with a lot of banks,” Ochoa said today in an interview at the agency’s offices in Lima. “It will be complicated, but that’s their problem.”

Peruvian President Ollanta Humala’s government is following through on pledges to curb natural gas exports to Mexico as domestic demand surges. The Camisea group used part of their 11 trillion cubic feet of gas reserves to guarantee financing from lenders including Credit Suisse Group AG, the Inter-American Development Bank and Corporacion Andina de Fomento, according to Cesar Gutierrez, an energy consultant and former president of state oil company Petroperu.

Hunt Oil spokeswoman Jeanne Phillips declined to comment when contacted by telephone. Repsol spokesman Kristian Rix and Pluspetrol spokesman Daniel Guerra didn’t respond to e-mails and telephone calls seeking comment.

Natural gas for November delivery dropped 3 cents, or 0.8 percent, to $3.60 per million British thermal units at 3:14 p.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Futures have dropped 26 percent this year.

--With assistance from Rodrigo Orihuela in Buenos Aires. Editors: Dale Crofts, Robin Saponar

To contact the reporter on this story: Alex Emery in Lima at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dale Crofts at

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