Indonesia's Pertamina Says to Raise Oil Output With Overseas Acquisitions
SINGAPORE, May 16 (Reuters) - Indonesia's state energy firm PT Pertamina is planning to buy mostly overseas oil and gas assets to help raise its output nearly five-fold to 2.2 million barrels per day (bpd) by 2025.
Southeast Asia's largest economy was once self-sufficient in oil and gas production and is a former member of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC). But it has been struggling for years to attract enough investment to halt declining domestic output, which has dropped to about half of its 1995 peak of 1.6 million bpd.
Pertamina said in statements issued on Thursday, a public holiday in Indonesia, that it plans to acquire mainly oil and gas blocks that are producing or at the development stage, as well as assets that have significant oil reserves.
"Oil and gas imports largely contributed to Indonesia's current account deficit last year. There's probably a greater drive towards achieving energy self-sufficiency," said Gundy Cahyadi, a Singapore-based economist at DBS Bank.
Pertamina said 70 percent of its oil and gas acquisitions would be of overseas assets, which were expected to provide 600,000 bpd of the total output target.
Pertamina did not specify countries where it is planning to look for assets, how much it planned to spend or how it would raise the money.
"Non-organic growth through acquisitions of assets overseas will give an important contribution to the growth in Pertamina's production ... and add to the supply of crude oil to fulfil Indonesia's needs," Denie S. Tampubolon, Pertamina's senior vice president of upstream business development, said in a statement.
Pertamina's current oil and gas output is 465,220 barrels of oil equivalent per day.
(Reporting by Eveline Danubrata; Additional reporting by Fergus Jensen in Jakarta; Editing by Tom Hogue)