MUMBAI, Oct. 11 (UPI) -- Indian energy company Reliance Industries Ltd. said it signed an agreement to study the potential for an oil reserve area in Venezuela's lucrative Orinoco Belt.
The company, known also as RIL, entered into the agreement with Venezuelan state oil company Petroleos de Venezuela, or PDVSA, for a joint study in Ayacucho block 8 in the Orinoco Belt.
"As per the study agreement, both the parties will jointly evaluate the development plan for Ayacucho 8," RIL said in a statement Thursday.
It offered no insight into its development plan or reserve expectations in Venezuela.
The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries saod in its latest monthly report crude oil production in Venezuela was down from 2.34 million barrels per day in August to 2.32 million bpd in September.
The Orinoco Belt is considered one of the richest deposits of oil outside the Middle East. In 2010, the U.S. Geological Service put the reserve estimate at approximately 513 billion barrels of recoverable oil.