Repsol asks Vietnam for compensation after drilling project halted

MADRID (Reuters) - Spanish oil major Repsol is in talks with Vietnam’s state oil company and national authorities over compensation for the suspension of an oil drilling project in the South China Sea, its chief financial officer said on Friday.

Vietnam halted the project in the “Red Emperor” block off its southeastern coast, which is licensed to Repsol, after coming under pressure from China, sources said in March.

“We are already in conversations with Petrovietnam and Vietnamese authorities in order to be compensated for the impact of the suspension of the project,” CFO Miguel Martinez said on a conference call to present first-quarter results.

The field’s estimated potential recovery is around 45 million barrels of crude oil, 172 billion cubic feet of natural gas and 2.3 million barrels of condensate, a super light form of crude oil that is mostly a byproduct of gas production.

Reporting by Jose Elías Rodríguez, writing by Isla Binnie; Editing by Sonya Dowsett