Total in Bolivia


First presence of Total in Bolivia


Operation on Aquio block


Operation on Ipati block

Total has been present in Bolivia since 1994, after having been present in 1957 via Petrofina.


1957 - 1993

  • In 1957, Petrobelge was created on July 27 (Belgian Petroleum Research and Exploitation Company), of which Petrofina holds 25%, alongside the very best of Belgian capitalism, with the aim of launching a vast research program. She begins by resuming research in Bolivia.

    • 1973, The CFP joins Union Oil in Bolivia for a permit in the Rio Madidi area and is an operator.
mission de reconnaissance
Reconnaissance Mission in the Rio Madidi Region, DR – Total
  • 1976, the CFP decides to withdraw from Bolivia.

Since 1994

  • 1994, Total takes a 32.5% stake in a consortium that is looking for hydrocarbons in the Madidi block

  • 1997, Total becomes license operator for Tarija West and acquires a 15% interest in the San Alberto and San Antonio licenses

permis de Tarija
Worker on the permit Tarija West, 1999, © Alain Keler
  • 1998, Total discovers gas on the San Alberto permit. Elf withdraws from the Secure license
san alberto
San Alberto site, aerial view, 2001, © Philippe Demail
  • 1999, Totalfina discovers hydrocarbons at the Itau site and gas at the San Antonio site (SBL X1); confirmation of the discovery of San Alberto.
site san antonio
San Antonio site, night drilling rig, 2001, © Philippe Demail
  • 2000, TotalFinaElf (operator 41%) continues on the XX West permit, the delineation of the discovery of Itau by drilling the Itau X-2 well. On this same license, a seismic campaign is carried out to prepare the continuation of the exploration on the other anticlinal axes. On the San Alberto permit (TotalFinaElf 15%), the first phase of development ends in December, for a start in production in January 2001. On the San Antonio permit (TotalFinaElf 15%), a second drilling, Sabalo X2, is in progress.


  • 2001, TotalFinaElf acquires a stake in two new licenses, Aquio (operator 100%), located 150 km north of Block XX West and Rio Hondo (50% operator) 750 km northwest of Santa Cruz, operated by Petrobras. Gas production from the San Alberto permit begins.


  • 2002, the average daily production, in Group share, of the San Alberto field (TotalFinaElf 15%) is 5 kboe / d. In early 2002, TotalFinaElf acquired a 9% interest in the Rio Grande compressor facilities, at the entry point of the Bolivia-Brazil pipeline. The drilling of the Itau X3 well on block XX West (TotalFinaElf operator 41%) begins in August.


  • 2003, in March, Total enters the exploration block "Ipati". The Itau X3 exploration well on the XX West block, which was drilled in mid-2003, does not yield the expected results. The Sabalo field, whose development was launched in 2001 on the San Antonio permit starts production in early 2003. As part of the further development of the San Alberto field, the San Alberto 14 well is drilled with the expected results. The average daily production, as a Group share, of the San Alberto and San Antonio fields was 11 kboe / d in 2003, more than double the previous year. The Transierra pipeline ("Gasyr", TOTAL 11.0%) has been operational since April.


  • 2004, TOTAL makes the Bereti exploration permit (TOTAL, 100%). A positive well (Incahuasi X1) is drilled on Ipati's license. The average daily production, as a Group share, of the San Alberto and San Antonio fields was 18 kboe / d in 2004, compared to 11 kboe / d in 2003.


  • 2005, following the vote in May on a new law changing the fiscal and regulatory framework for oil and gas activities in Bolivia, TOTAL calls on the Bolivian authorities to open negotiations in order to maintain economic conditions and a satisfactory regulatory framework for both parties.


  • 2006, pursuant to the decree of nationalization of hydrocarbons of May 1, 2006, the six new contracts of exploration-production are signed at the end of October and approved by the legislative power on December 3rd. Nevertheless, the entry into force of these contracts is postponed pending the completion of a new legislative process for the approval of these contracts. These new contracts, which include some of the elements of the production sharing agreements, provide for a 50% level of production taxes and profit sharing between YPFB (Yacimientos Petroliferos Fiscales Bolivianos, Bolivian national oil company) and the foreign partner, after repayment of investments and costs.


  • 2007, the new exploration and production contracts signed with the Bolivian State enter into force on May 2nd. In addition, the Group's stake in the XX West Block (operator) increased to 75% in 2006.


  • 2008, Total signs a cooperation agreement with Gazprom and Yacimentos Petroliferos Fiscales Bolivianos to explore the Azero Block as part of a joint venture. This block is adjacent to the Ipati and Aquio blocks. Seismic work is done.
campagen d'explo sismique
Ipati-3D seismic exploration campaign, in the mountainous region of Incahuasi, Bolivia: drilling team of the 6200 firing line, north of the Ipati block, 2008, © Marc Roussel
  • 2009, Regarding the discovery of Itau, located on block XX West, TOTAL filed in August a declaration of commerciality with the Bolivian authorities and prepares the development of the field. The Group discovers the Incahuasi gas field, located on the Ipati block. Following the interpretation of the 3D seismic conducted in 2008, a well of appreciation is in progress on the adjacent block of Aquio to confirm the extension of the discovery to the north.


  • ​​​​​​​2010, TOTAL sells 34% interest and the operator role in block XX Tarija Oeste, reducing its stake to 41%. TOTAL signs an agreement to sell 20% interest in Aquio and Ipati licenses.


  • 2011, the production of the Itaú gas-condensate field, located on block XX Tarija Oeste, starts in February. It is routed to the existing infrastructure of the neighboring San Alberto field. It is by drilling the Aquio block, located north of the Ipati block, on which a first discovery had already been made, that the Group confirms a third elephant: the blocks of Aquio and Ipati contain indeed large quantities of gas and condensate, with total resources close to 1 billion barrels of oil equivalent.


  • 2012, the Group's production, mainly gas, is 27 kboe / d, compared to 25 kboe / d in 2011 and 20 kboe / d in 2010. In December, TOTAL submits to the authorities a development plan for phase 1 the project includes two wells connected to a processing plant with a capacity of 6.5 Mm3 / d for which tenders are launched.


  • 2013, in July , TOTAL sells 20% of its interest in Aquio and Ipati, reducing its stake from 80% to 60%. In August, TOTAL acquires a 50% interest in the Azero Exploration License located in the Andean Piedmont, west of the Ipati and Aquio blocks and extending over an area of ​​more than 7,800 km. km2. The main contracts for the construction of the processing plant and its connection to the export network are awarded in October.


  •  2016, the Group's production, mainly gas, was 34 kboe / d in 2016, compared to 28 kboe / d in 2015 and 30 kboe / d in 2014. The Incahuasi gas field, located on the blocks of Aquio and Ipati, is put into production in August. A geophysical data acquisition campaign is launched in the fourth quarter on the Azero exploration license located in Andean Piedmont.

Central Processing Facility (CPF), the gas treatment plant in the gas-condensate field. Incahuasi, in the region of Chaco 2016, © Laurent Zylberman
  • 2017, the Rio Hondo permit is issued in June.