Brazil’s Minister of Mines and Energy, Bento Albuquerque, announced that the nation could expect to see an oil production increase of 300,000 barrels per day this year, marking a 10% increase from last year.
The comments were made at the opening of an International Energy Agency (IEA) ministerial meeting being held in Paris to discuss the energy landscape, and reportedly follow a request from US Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm for Brazil to amp up crude output to aid ongoing efforts to bring down prices.
“Countries that have stock, like the US, Japan, India, and others, are releasing. But there also has to be an effort to increase production. She [Jennifer Granholm] asked me if Brazil could be part of this effort and I said ‘of course it can’. We are already increasing production, while most OECD countries have reduced. We have increased our production in the last 3 years,” Albuquerque told newspaper Valor Econômico.
In response to the recent announcement, Granholm thanked Albuquerque, saying “we recognise that this is an emergency that we are in, on wartime footing”.
Currently, Brazil produces three million barrels per day of crude oil, with around a third of this exported to other nations.
Pressure for nations to increase production levels has been rising in light of sanctions against Russia bumping up already high prices and causing market destabilisation. While countries such as the US and other member states of the IEA have committed to tapping into petroleum reserves to help ease market pressure, other oil-rich nations such as those in the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) have been reluctant to contribute.
According to Reuters, Albuquerque wrote on Twitter that the decision to boost Brazil’s production was an “important contribution by Brazil to the stabilisation of global energy markets”. The country will also be accelerating renewable energy, with new approvals granted for offshore wind and solar generation projects.