UPDATE 1-Argentina's YPF strikes oil in southern province of Neuquen

jueves 14 de agosto de 2014 11:52 GYT

(Adds energy import context)

BUENOS AIRES Aug 14 (Reuters) - Argentine state-controlled energy company YPF said on Thursday it had discovered an unconventional oil field in the southern province of Neuquen.

The find comes while YPF is struggling to attract investment needed to develop vast shale oil and gas formations in the Vaca Muerta area, which is also located in the southern Patagonia region.

"We have discovered oil for the third time in a non-conventional site," YPF chief Miguel Galuccio told reporters. "In this case in a well called Filo Morado, which is in the northern part of Neuquen, south of Mendoza. We have no information about potential production."

Argentina needs more oil and gas production to halt the drain on central bank dollar reserves caused by expensive energy imports. Foreign exchange reserves have fallen more than 5.3 percent over the last year to $28.967 billion. (Reporting by Maximiliano Rizzi; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe and Lisa Von Ahn)