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Debts threaten Latin America’s state oil companies

Petrobras, PdV and Pemex facing mounting financial pressures. Expect deep spending cuts

As the oil price boomed, Latin America’s biggest national oil companies (NOCs) spent big in pursuit of new reserves and binged on debt to finance it all. Now payments are coming due just as weak prices cripple cash flows. Government intervention, restructuring or even default are now likely.  The region’s three largest NOCs – Brazil’s Petrobras, Venezuela’s PdV and Mexico’s Pemex – have a combined $45bn in debt repayments due over the next two years. With international oil benchmarks trading in the mid-$30s – or much lower for some of Latin America’s heavy crude grades – the cash crunch will stretch the companies’ finances and divert funds needed for investment. Ruing the ever-deepening o

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