Brazil-based Petrobras has announced that it plans to triple oil production from the country’s extensive deep-water fields by 2017.

The state-run energy producer said it will invest nearly $147bn, mainly in exploration and production, or 62% of the total $236.7bn that it earmarked for the five-year plan, reported AFP.

Petrobras while releasing its management and business plan to investors said that it plans to explore 962,500 barrels a day, which is three times more than its current 300,000 within the specified date.

Petrobas president Graca Foster was quoted by the news agency as saying that exploration and production is the company’s top priority.

"We need to drill for oil" to obtain the "exceptional results" expected in 2017: 3.4 million barrels of oil equivalent per day, including crude oil and natural gas production, Foster added.

"That’s one million more than what we had in 2012."

The company expects its crude oil production to reach 2.75 million barrels a day in 2017, up from 1.98 million in 2012.

On Sunday, in an interview to TV Brazil, Foster said that output will reach 4.2 million bpd by 2020.

According to Foster, the 52% rise in production will mainly come from the pre-salt reserves, located at a depth of 6,000m under a thick deposit of salt off southeastern Brazil.