Statoil to drill 40 exploration wells in 2018

Norwegian oil company Statoil has lifted its capex and expects to drill more wells in 2018 compared to 2017.

Presenting its fourth quarter and full-year 2017 results the company said it expected its organic capex to be around $11 billion for 2018. Organic capital expenditure in 2017 was $9.4 billion.

The company expects to drill around 40 exploration wells in 2018 with an expected spend of around $1.5 billion. For comparison, as of year-end 2017, Statoil had completed 28 exploration wells with 14 commercial discoveries.

The company on Thursday posted a net income income of $2.57 billion in the fourth quarter of 2017, compared to a loss of $2,78 billion in the fourth quarter of 2016.

Adjusted earnings after tax were  $1.3 billion in the fourth quarter, up from negative $40 million in the same period last year

Cash flows provided by operating activities before taxes paid and working capital amounted to $20.7 billion for the full year of 2017 compared to $15.0 billion in 2016.

“In a recovering market, we delivered strong earnings and cash flow from all business segments. We had record high production both in the fourth quarter and for the full year, supported by continued solid operational performance. We expect long-term underlying earnings growth, and in line with our dividend policy the board proposes to increase the dividend by 4.5% to USD 0.23 per share,” says Eldar Sætre, President and CEO of Statoil ASA.

Statoil delivered equity production of 2,134 mboe per day in the fourth quarter, a 2 percent increase from 2,095 mboe per day in the same period in 2016. The company expects 1-2% production growth in 2018 and an annual production growth of around 3-4% from 2017 to 2020.

The company’s board of directors proposed to the annual general meeting (AGM) to increase the dividend by 4.5% to USD 0.23 per share, for the fourth quarter.


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