Petroleo Brasileiro SA, Brazil
's state-controlled oil company, opened bidding on more than $1 billion of contracts to build tankers, platforms and other vessels as the company boosts domestic spending on construction, according to a Bloomberg report
. Petrobras is taking the bids as part of a $56 billion investment plan to almost double production by 2010. The plan calls for construction of 26 ships in Brazilian shipyards as the company expects in five years to produce 3.4 million barrels a day, about as much as Mexico, the hemisphere's largest producer. Earlier this month the company said it will spend $32 billion, or 57 percent of its 2005-2010 investment plan, on equipment and services from by Brazilian contractors.