In this regards, Petrobras board has also approved an initial 30-day exclusive negotiations with an option for a 30-day extension.

Reuters cited a source familiar with the matter as saying that the final deal is planned to be signed by Petrobras with potential bidder within two months.

Petrobras’ Argentina subsidiary, Petrobras Argentina has downstream operations, including refining, petrochemicals and electricity generation.

The divestment is part of the company’s effort to sell around $14bn worth of assets in 2016 in a bid to reduce debt and maintain cash amid plunging oil prices.

Separately, the company board had approved the start of a competitive process to transfer the rights of oil and natural gas exploitation, development and production in certain onshore fields as well as the sale of the assets related to these concessions in Brazil.

Earlier, Petrobras said it has started negotiations for potential sale of its regional natural gas pipeline subsidiary Nova Transportadora do Sudeste (NTS).

Petrobras CEO Aldemir Bendine said the proceeds from the sales will be used to reduce its debt of about $130bn.

In 2015, Petrobras invited firms include Argentina´s state-controlled YPF, Argentinian independents Pluspetrol and Tecpetrol, and BP-controlled Pan American Energy to present offers for its Argentinian assets, reported Argus.

Image: Petrobras head quarters in Rio de Janeiro downtown, Brazil. Photo: courtesy of galio, modified by Fulviusbsas/Wikipedia.