Petrobras had its best operating performance in 2020, overcoming considerable challenges arising from the pandemic, contraction in global demand for fuels and low prices.
We reached annual production records of 2.28 million barrels per day (MMbpb) of oil and NGL and 2.84 million barrels of oil equivalent per day (MMboed) of total production. Previous production records had been reached in 2015, of 2.23 MMbpd and 2.79 MMboed, respectively.
Another positive aspect relates to the qualitative aspect of production, which is extremely important for value generation.
In 2020, production in the pre-salt fields was 1.86 MMboed, accounting for 66% of total production, against only 24% in 2015. This means lower operating costs and better-quality oil.
The BUZ-12 well, located in the Búzios field, had the highest average production in the year, at 52.4 Kboed.
The average annual production of oil, NGL and natural gas is in line with the revised production target disclosed in the 3Q20 Production and Sales Report (2.84 MMboed), and exceeds the original target by 5% (2.7 MMboed).
The average production of oil, NGL and natural gas in 4Q20 was 2.68 MMboed, 9.1% below the previous quarter, due to the resumption of most of the scheduled maintenance stoppages that could not be carried out in 2Q20 and 3Q20 due to the pandemic.
We highlight the following aspects, which were of paramount importance to our solid performance in 2020:
• increased production of the P-74, P-75, P-76 and P-77 platforms, in the Búzios field, supported by the expansion of the oil and gas processing capacity of the units, through the use of temporary generation energy gaps and gas compression availability, in addition to the high production potential of the wells and the reservoir;
• fewer interventions than expected for combating CO2 corrosion in subsea gas injection pipelines, made possible by the development of new inspection tools and technologies;
• lower production decline than expected in the Tupi and Sapinhoá fields, as a result of the better performance of the reservoirs;
• greater production efficiency and optimization of production maintenance stoppages in platforms, despite the scenario of operational restrictions resulting from the impacts caused by the pandemic.
Moving forward with the active portfolio management, in 4Q20 we signed contracts to sell all of our interest in 27 onshore and shallow water fields, located in the Recôncavo and Sergipe-Alagoas Basins. At the same time, we completed the sale of our stakes in Baúna (Santos Basin) and Tucano Sul Clusters (Tucano Basin), which produced 14.2 Kboed in 2020.
In November 2020, the transportation of FPSO Carioca began from the shipyard in Dalian, China, to Brazil. The arrival at the shipyard in Angra dos Reis, in Rio de Janeiro, is scheduled for the first week of February, when the integration and commissioning activities will be completed. This production platform will be installed in the Sépia field, with production expected to start in mid-2021, and will have a processing capacity of 180 Kbpd and 6 million m³ of natural gas per day.
Despite the second wave of growth in the number of COVID-19 cases in Brazil, we are managing to keep our operation and maintenance activities, with no impact to our operational goals, while keeping strong vigilance in access controls to our facilities through massive testing, tracking and quarantining. Since the beginning of the pandemic, Petrobras has applied approximately 480,000 tests to its employees and service providers.
In a year in which excess inventories were a considerable challenge for the global oil industry, our focus on improving inventory management has allowed our inventories to be reduced by 8 million barrels of oil in 2020.
This focus on efficient resource allocation - as demonstrated by the rationalization of our offices outside Brazil - coupled with the greater integration of logistics, marketing and sales resulted in record exports of oil and fuel oil, offsetting the contraction in domestic demand for fuels, mainly in 2Q20.
Oil exports played a crucial role during the worst moments of the pandemic, allowing cash generation at a critical time and preventing production losses. In April, at the height of the crisis, 1 million barrels were exported per day (physical outputs). In addition, it is important to highlight the successful performance of Búzios oil, the main oil in our export basket, with the inclusion of 14 new customers throughout 2020.
In January, we continued with a good performance in oil exports, breaking another record, at the Angra dos Reis terminal, of 19.3 million barrels of oil exported in January 2021. The previous record, in May 2020, was 18.7 million barrels of oil exported.
Even in an adverse scenario, sales of oil products remained at a similar level to that of 2019, allowing the utilization factor of the refining park to reach the same level as the previous year, despite its significant reduction in 2Q20. This was possible due to the increase in exports, especially low-sulfur fuel oil (with an annual record of 194 Kbpd in 2020), coupled with new commercial efforts made in 2020, such as diesel and gasoline auctions.
In 2020, there was an increase of 2.8% in the production of oil by-products, consistent with the marketing and sales efforts of our products in the global market and better logistical structuring.
The production of S-10 diesel, with low sulfur content, has been reaching record levels since July, reflecting the commercial actions implemented by the Company to expand the offer of this product to replace S-500 diesel. In October, we reached the 408 Kbpd mark. The total production of S-10 diesel in 2020 reached an annual record of 121 million barrels, consistent with our strategic objective of launching cleaner products for environmental conservation.
In the Gas and Power segment, power generation in 2020 was 1,756 average MW, representing a 13% compared to 2019, due to lower consumption resulting from the decrease in economic activity, as a result of the pandemic. However, in 4Q20 power generation increased 315.4% compared to 3Q20, reflecting lower rainfall, resulting in a strong increase in demand for natural gas to replace hydroelectric power generation.