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Brazil raises US$2 billion in large deepwater oil block auctions

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - Brazil's government in recent hours raised almost US$2 billion with the auction of two large oil blocks in pre-salt ultra-deep waters, which attracted bids from international companies such as Total and Shell.

"We had an extraordinary result for Brazil that exceeded our expectations," said National Petroleum Agency (ANP) general director Ricardo Saboia in a statement.

Bids two years ago, touted as "historic," raised US$17 billion, short of the expected US$26 billion, because large foreign companies did not participate.

To attract investors, the Brazilian government reduced the price to be paid . . .

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