QUITO, April 8 Ecuador's second-largest oil
pipeline burst on Monday, but exports from the OPEC-member
country will not be affected, the government said.
The Heavy Crude Oil Pipeline, known as OCP, is a
475-kilometer (300-mile) pipeline with a capacity of up to
450,000 barrels per day (bpd) that links oil fields in the
eastern Sucumbios region to the Pacific coast. The pipeline
transports around 150,000 bpd.
"The breakage of OCP, which occurred on Monday, April 8 at
6:10 am (1210 GMT) will not affect crude exports," the energy
ministry said in a statement, adding that two export terminals
in the Pacific coast have 2.6 million barrels of crude stocks
The stocks are enough for forthcoming oil shipments due on
April 10, 13 and 17, the statement said.
Ecuador's energy ministry said that around 5,500 barrels of
crude were spilled when OCP broke and that the pipeline
suspended operations following the incident.
According to the ministry the pipeline will be back online
by April 13.
The statement said officials were investigating the cause of
the incident, which was initially blamed on geological factors.
Ecuador is OPEC's smallest member and last year produced an
average of 504,000 barrels of crude oil per day.
OCP is controlled by several oil companies, including
Spain's Repsol, France's Perenco and Brazil's Petrobras
The Andean country's largest pipeline, known as Sote,
transports crude oil produced by state-run company
Petroamazonas, which aims to produce 325,000 bpd on average this
(Reporting by Alexandra Valencia; Writing by Eduardo Garcia;
Editing by Steve Orlofsky)