A vessel carrying about 1 million barrels of crude from Guyana set sail on Monday for the United States, according to vessel tracking service TankerTrackers.com, marking the tiny South American nation’s long-awaited debut as a world oil exporter.
The first cargo of Liza crude departed from the floating platform Liza Destiny off Guyana, operated by U.S. oil firm Exxon Mobil. Partners Hess Corp and China’s CNOOC also participate in the project, which has found over 6 billion barrels of recoverable oil and gas.
Exxon on Monday declined to offer additional details of the shipment or its destination. On Friday, it said the project’s first shipment of Liza light sweet crude would load over the weekend and then head for its refining network.
The Suezmax tanker Yannis P arrived in Guyanese waters late last week. Exxon operates oil refineries in Louisiana, Texas, Montana and Chicago, in the United States.
First production started in December at the offshore Stabroek block, where Guyana’s major commercial oil resources so far have been found. In all, Exxon and its partners have disclosed 15 discoveries in Guyana, an impoverished nation whose economy is expected to be transformed by the finds.
The Exxon-led venture alone expects to produce at least 750,000 barrels per day of crude by 2025, enough for Guyana to become an oil power alongside neighboring Venezuela and Brazil.
Exxon has said it planned to export its first two cargoes of Guyanese oil. Another of the first shipments from the offshore Liza platform is expected to be taken by U.S.-based Hess, with others earmarked for sale by the Guyanese government through an open-market tender won by Royal Dutch Shell.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Marianna Parraga and Neil Marks in Georgetown. Editing by Diane Craft and Tom Brown)