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Guyana grants Saudi Aramco unit one-year contract to market crude

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GEORGETOWN, Sept 16 (Reuters) - Guyana has granted a unit of Saudi Arabian Oil Co, known as Aramco, a one-year contract to market the government's share of the crude produced in the South American country, Vice President Bharrat Jagdeo told Reuters.

The country in early September had awarded Aramco a contract to market a cargo scheduled for Sept. 21-22. Natural Resources Minister Vickram Bharrat told Reuters at the time that the company was likely to win the year-long contract as well, but that the process was not yet complete.

Guyana became the world's newest energy hotspot when a consortium led by Exxon Mobil Corp began producing crude off the country's coast in late 2019. It is now producing around 120,000 barrels per day, and the consortium, which also includes Hess Corp and China's CNOOC Ltd has discovered more than 9 billion barrels of recoverable resources.

But the country lacks domestic refining capacity or a state oil company, so earlier this year it launched a search process for an agent to market its crude. Parallel talks with Indian refiners to export Guyana's light oil to that country failed to lead to a supply contract. (Reporting by Neil Marks Writing by Luc Cohen Editing by Marguerita Choy)

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