Oil investment to drop.
CARACAS -- Investments in the Venezuelan petroleum industry are
expected fall by $500 million next year to $6.4 billion. The decrease
reflects reduced investment requirements as three heavy oil upgrading
projects in the Orinoco Tar Belt are completed. Investments by state oil
company PDVSA are expected to increase $200 million to $3 billion in
2001. The three heavy oil projects are expected to boost heavy crude
production from about 140,000 b/d to about 450,000 b/d within 15 months.