Ecopetrol details $10.6B 2014 investment plan


Colombia state oil firm Ecopetrol (NYSE: EC) has approved US$10.6 billion of investment for next year, with 61% (US$6.46 billion) to be directly invested by Ecopetrol and 39% (US$4.13 billion) through its affiliates and subsidiaries.

The majority (US$4.65 billion) of Ecopetrol's direct investment next year is marked for crude and natural gas production development. The firm's East Llanos project is slated to receive 64% of direct production development investment, with 17% going to the Middle Magdalena project and 11% to the Orinoquía project.

Ecopetrol also expects to invest US$928 million in exploration next year. In Colombia, the firm plans to drill 20 exploration wells, six delineation wells, and eight stratigraphic wells. The East Llanos project is marked for 13 exploration wells, with another two planned in offshore Colombia, two in southern Huila province, and three in the northern areas of Cesar, Antioquia, and Norte de Santander.

The firm also plans to spend US$240 million on developing nonconventional resources. Activity will include nine stratigraphic wells, three exploration wells, and three pilot production tests – mainly on blocks in the Catatumbo and Middle Magdalena projects.

Next year's direct investment plan includes US$339 million for refining and petrochemical spending, with 26% slated for modernizing the Barrancabermeja-PMRB refinery.

Through its affiliates and subsidiaries, Ecopetrol plans to invest US$1.76 billion in refining and petrochemical projects, including US$1.63 billion to modernize the Cartagena refinery.

Next year's subunit spending includes US$1.34 billion in transport investment. Ecopetrol expects crude oil pipeline capacity to increase by an additional 40,000 b/d in 2014, and total crude and natural gas pipeline capacity to grow by another 70,000 boe/d.

Affiliate and subsidiary 2014 exploration investment is set at US$632 million, and includes five exploration wells on the US side of the Gulf of Mexico and six in Colombia.

The company also plans to spend US$392 million on developing affiliate and subsidiary oil and gas production in 2014. Ecopetrol forecasts total group oil and gas production at 819,000 boe/d next year.


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