The National Hydrocarbons Agency (ANH) of Colombia said it plans to auction 22 million hectares
for oil exploration and production for $2.6 billion next year, Reuters reported. As more foreign direct investment has been injected into the Colombian oil sector for the past decade, the country hopes to boost oil production as well as its crude oil reserves.
"We want to motivate companies and entrepreneurs to keep betting on the search for oil in Colombia with competitive and transparent mechanisms that stimulate supply," said Colombia Mines and Energy Minister Amylkar Acosta.
Recently, Colombia's state-owned oil firm Ecopetrol said it intends to expand oil investment by 11 percent to $10.6 billion in 2014, the majority of which will go toward energy exploration and production, according to a Reuters report on Dec. 13. This will also help meet the country's goal of increasing production of tight oil reserves. Colombia predicts the investment will help the country produce an average of 770,000 barrels per day of oil in 2014.
The auctions by ANH will begin in February 2014 and the oil exploration and production areas will have assignments by the end of July.