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RIO DE JANEIRO, March 25 (Reuters) - Brazil expects to hold one oil-rights auction by the middle of 2015, Marco Antônio Martins Almeida, the petroleum secretary of Brazil's energy ministry, said on Tuesday.
Almeida also said at an event here that a new contract for 5 billion barrels of offshore oil and natural gas that state-run oil company Petroleo Brasileiro SA bought from Brazil's government in a 2010 oil-for-stock swap will only be signed next year after the company, also known as Petrobras, declares areas bought in the swap commercially viable.
The Franco offshore area purchased in the 2010 deal has more oil and gas resources than originally expected, Almeida added. (Reporting by Jeb Blount; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)