Premier Reports Production Ahead of Guidance
Premier Oil reported Wednesday that its production has remained ahead of guidance for this year. The independent oil company – which has operations in the North Sea, Asia, Africa and the Falkland Islands – averaged 57,100 barrels of oil equivalent per day during the year-to-date, compared to a full-year target of 55,000 boepd.
In an operations update released to investors, Premier said that it still anticipates first oil from its Solan field in the UK North Sea during the fourth quarter of this year. Work here is progressing well, according to the firm, which pointed out that 97-percent uptime has been achieved thanks to its use of the Regalia floating hotel vessel.
"A number of the critical path platform systems have now been successfully commissioned including the firewater deluge system and other safety related systems such as the gas detection system. 34,000 hours of planned commissioning activity remains to first oil (down from 56,000 hours at the time of the company's half-yearly results in August) and these are being liquidated at a rate of 600-800 hours per day. Completion of the commissioning of the subsea infrastructure is also progressing well," Premier said.
Premier said that its full-year capital expenditure guidance is unchanged, and would be significantly reduced in 2016. The firm stated in August that it would spend $900 million on development and a further $240 million on exploration, while its total capex for 2016 would be just $500 million.
Premier also pointed out that it is in a good position with respect to its access to cash, with it continuing to enjoy significant liquidity thanks to $1.3 billion of cash on its balance sheet as well as undrawn credit facilities. Its principal $2.5-billion bank facility is not due for refinancing until mid-2019.
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