RIO DE JANEIRO—The recent collapse in oil prices and battle for market share between Russia and Saudi Arabia have prompted some Argentine oil companies to call for a return to the Creole barrel to shield the Vaca Muerta shale play from international turmoil.

While production costs today are significantly lower than they were years ago because of investments in technology and knowledge gained by companies, the oil price crash is setting off alarms and will likely reduce profit margins. The Argentine industry wants the government to set an oil price floor.

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