Peruvian state-own energy company Petroperu has signed a contract to take over operations at Block 1 in the Talara basin, restarting hydrocarbons production in the country following a 25 year-long hiatus.

The company this week began production at Block 1 – current output is around 540 barrels per day of oil – after the original 30-year contract with player UNNA expired on 26 December.

In a ceremony at one of the block’s 190 active wells, Peruvian President Pedro Castillo Terrones said the “historical” move will allow Petroperu to prepare itself for the future.

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The temporary 22-month contract to operate Lot 1 comes alongside similar deals whereby Petroperu will also be assigned next year control of blocks 64 and 192.

It is the first time Petroperu will be in charge of producing oil and natural gas in Peru since the 1990s, when the company's oil output was close to 187,000 bpd before it auctioned contracts to international players.

Separately, Petroperu has resumed production via the NorPeruano pipeline in the Peruvian Amazon jungle after operations were interrupted in early October by indigenous organisations.

With the situation now under control, Petroperu can transport output from companies such as Perenco and PetroTal that had been paralysed by the protests.