Latin America will require up to $2 trillion in energy-sector investment over the next 20 years to maintain its pace of development, the development bank behind the study "Energy: Perspectives on the Challenges and Opportunities in Latin America and the Caribbean" said Thursday in the Uruguayan capital.

"Over the next 20 years, we'll need between $1 trillion and $2 trillion in international funding for the sector," Hamilton Moss de Souza, vice president for energy of the Development Bank of Latin America, known by the Spanish acronym CAF, said.

The U.N. Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean, the Organization of American States and the Latin American Energy Organization were among the other participants in the study, which CAF financed.

Also taking part were the Regional Association of Oil, Gas and Biofuels Sector Companies in Latin America and the Caribbean, or Arpel, the Commission of Regional Electrical Integration and the World Energy Council.

To raise that amount of funding, "it will not be enough" to knock on the door of "all the multilateral banks," but also will require the involvement of those countries' governments and the private sector, Moss said.

He said the report was important as a "summary" but urged the different organizations involved in the study and the region's countries to move on to the second phase of raising and allocating resources so a major infrastructure build-out can occur in Latin America.

Arpel's strategic affairs director, Amanda Pereira, said for her part that "the region ranks second in oil and gas reserves," which will "require significant investment to develop."

To that end, a total of "$77 billion a year" must be invested in Latin America's hydrocarbons sector between 2010 and 2035, she said.

EFE