Consortium buys exploration rights for Brazilian oil field

<p>Petrobras leads the consortium, which also includes Total and Shell.</p>

Some of the world's largest oil companies are part of a consortium that has won the right to carry out exploration of a major oil field in South America.

Brazil's state-run Petrobras will lead the consortium – which also includes companies such as Shell and Total – after it was the only bid to make it to the final stage.

President of the government's National Petroleum Agency Magda Chambriard claimed that the auction – to determine who develops the Libra oil field – was a success.

"It is hard to imagine a more successful outcome. These companies are among the world's ten most valuable in the energy branch," she was quoted as saying by BBC News.

Chinese state companies CNPC and CNOOC will each put ten per cent each into the consortium, while Shell and Total have 20 per cent stakes and Petrobras has 30 per cent.

Firms from the Asian nation are becoming increasingly interested in oil, as the country recently the world's largest importer of oil, according to new figures revealed by the Energy Information Administration.

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