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CNOOC 1Q Oil, Gas Revenue up 13% on Rising Production from Overseas

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HONG KONG - CNOOC Ltd. said Friday its first-quarter oil and gas revenue jumped 13% from a year earlier, thanks to strong overseas production after China's largest offshore oil producer by volume completed the acquisition of Canada's Nexen Inc. in February.

Oil and gas revenue for the three months ended March 31 rose to 55.31 billion yuan ($8.9 billion), from CNY48.84 billion a year earlier, despite lower selling prices of crude oil. The company didn't specify its first-quarter net profit.

CNOOC said its net crude oil and natural gas output rose 17% in the first quarter from the same period a year earlier, helped by an increase in production from countries including U.S. and Iraq.

The average selling price of its crude oil fell 8.7% to $110.29 in a barrel in the first quarter compared with the same period last year as global oil prices slumped.

The state-run CNOOC and its parent China National Offshore Oil Corp. have been the most aggressive among China's oil giants in terms of acquiring overseas shale gas and oil assets. Since 2011, the two have spent over $24.8 billion on overseas upstream assets, mostly in Africa, Australia and Canada.

The Nexen acquisition, China's largest single overseas investment, is vital for CNOOC's long-term growth and energy security, as its oil-and-gas output growth has been slowing since 2011 due to maturing fields.

Copyright (c) 2012 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

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