The second biggest industrial sector in the Americas after the USA, and the eighth biggest economy in the world, Brazil has also established itself as one of the fastest growing nations on the planet. Brazil is now a major player. Energy independent since 2006, in order to sustain it’s rapid development Brazil has turned to its vast deposits of natural gas and oil as a source of natural economic growth and stimulus.Petrobras, the Brazilian state-controlled oil and gas multinational, has announced ambitious plans for the commission of 28 new drilling rigs from Brazilian shipyards to be used for the deep-water exploration and exploitation of massive offshore fields. This fleet of deep-water rigs is capable of drilling through thick offshore subsalt fields, in some cases 2,000 meters (6,561 feet) deep.4 billion reais (US$ 2.1 billion) in funding has been earmarked for the project from the Guarantee Fund for Naval Construction and it is estimated that the scheme will generate more than 40,000 jobs including specialist drilling jobs, oil rig jobs, oil jobs & oil careers.An initial nine rigs will be contracted with the rest planned for completion between 2013 and 2018. The initial 9 will consist of seven vessel-type units, constructed in a single shipyard and based on consolidated technologies widely used in the international market. Contracting these seven rigs from a single shipyard will enable the successful contractor to invest in the necessary infrastructure, technology and expertise to not only carry on fulfilling orders efficiently but to also benefit from economies of scale and keep costs down.The other two first phase units, which may be either vessel-type rigs or semi-submersible platforms, will be built by a separate contractor and will be designed to incorporate the very latest in technologies and concepts. State of the art exploration and drilling hardware specifically designed for the use and the benefit of Petrobas.As well as the initial nine units, Petrobras will at the same time undertake a tendering process among all rig operators allowing each one to potentially land orders for up to four units. Under strict procurement guidelines all the rigs contracted for manufacture will be built locally in Brazilian shipyards, boosting the local economy and helping develop vital expertise and know-how. Some critics argue that inward procurement strategy will inevitably cause localised inflation and add to costs, especially if employment is politically motivated and jobs created at the expense of costs. They also warn of the risks of delaying new oil exploration caused by local shipyards unable deliver products on time or to satisfactory specification.The news of the ambitions rig procurement program comes only weeks after Petrobras announced another oil and natural gas discovery in the pre-salt layer in Santos Basin. Explorations of the Santos Basin have led to projections that the area contains at least 5-8 billion barrels of recoverable oil, making it make it twice the size of Brazil’s current largest field Roncador. According to the company press statement, the discovery was made at reservoir BM-S-9, after the drilling of a well known as Abare Oeste.