BP Expects Big Trinidad Oil Boost
BP Plc, Europe's largest oil company, expects to boost output of natural gas and oil from Trinidad and Tobago 48 per cent by 2008 by investing US$2.4 billion.
Production will rise to about 600,000 barrels a day of oil equivalent from its current 405,000 barrels a day of oil equivalent, Robert Riley, who heads BP's Trinidad and Tobago unit, told reporters at an oil conference in Port of Spain, the capital of the Caribbean country. The country accounts for about 10 per cent of BP's overall output, he said.
BP, which has had a presence on the Caribbean island since 1961, has been helped by new offshore finds, which have boosted reserves and production potential. The company, based in London, accounted for about 70 per cent of the country's natural-gas output and half of oil production last year.
"By 2010, Trinidad and Tobago will be our largest unit by volume, excluding Russia," said Riley. The company was producing 100,000 barrels a day of oil equivalent as late as 1998, he said.
BP's 2008 output forecast from Trinidad and Tobago is slightly larger than what Occidental Petroleum Corp produced last year from all operations, he said. Occidental produced about 566,000 barrels a day of oil equivalent in 2004.
"We're looking at an annual growth rate of about 12 per cent through 2008," Riley said.
BP's American depositary receipts rose 29 US cents to US$63.49.
Investment this year will be about US$618 million, Riley said. Last year, capital expenditures were about US$600 million.
"We're sort of keeping our capital profile flat for the next four to five years," he said.
The company is targeting exploration and production efforts both onshore and offshore.
"We want to go deep," Riley said. The company is teaming up with EOG Resources Inc to drill a 23,000-feet deep natural-gas exploratory well. The effort will cost US$55 million, he said.
BP's Trinidad unit, bpTT, is 70 per cent owned by BP, and 30 per cent by Spain's Repsol YPF SA.
(Chinadaily Feb. 2005)