Average Quarterly Production 19,900 bopd
CALGARY, April 8, 2014 /CNW/ - Bankers Petroleum Ltd. (Bankers or the Company) (TSX: BNK, AIM: BNK) is pleased to announce the Company's first quarter operational update.
Production, Sales and Oil Prices
Average production from the Patos-Marinza oilfield in Albania for the first quarter of 2014 was 19,911 barrels of oil per day (bopd), 3.2% higher than 19,303 bopd in the fourth quarter of 2013.
Oil sales during the quarter averaged 18,435 bopd, 6.5% lower than the previous quarter average of 19,710 bopd as a result of the final export cargo of the quarter slipping into the second quarter due to weather delays. The crude oil inventory at March 31, 2014 increased 43% to 444,000 barrels, 133,000 barrels higher than 311,000 barrels at December 31, 2013.
The Patos-Marinza first quarter average oil price was approximately $87.35 per barrel (representing 81% of the Brent oil price of $108.22 per barrel), as compared with the fourth quarter average oil price of $85.71 per barrel (representing 78% of the Brent oil price of $109.27 per barrel).
Thirty-four (34) wells were drilled and rig released during the first quarter in the main area of the Patos-Marinza oilfield: twenty-nine (29) horizontal production wells, three (3) horizontal lateral re-drills and two (2) water disposal wells. Twenty-three (23) of these wells were completed and are on production, and the remaining nine (9) will be placed on production in April pending drilling rig move off the pad, well completions, and facilities build.
The sixth (6) drilling rig spud its first well in the main area of the field on March 18, 2014 and rig released in fifteen (15) days. The Company continues to focus drilling on development through pad drilling of multiple zones within the main area of the Patos-Marina oilfield. The additional rig provides flexibility to move forward with southern delineation drilling and Kuçova oilfield development.
Secondary Recovery Program
The Company continues to expand its secondary recovery program with the conversion of four (4) additional polymer injection wells in the Lower Driza during the first quarter along with additional polymer treatment facilities to support the expanded program. Bankers continues to monitor the early 2013 water flood and polymer flood patterns with initial production response expected in the first half of 2014. Injection performance has been maintained at target rates with no premature breakthrough of fluids to offset producers which is indicative of good reservoir conformance. Reservoir pressure is rising and is following current projection models.
To-date, Bankers has implemented three (3) water flood injectors in the Upper Marinza zone (M0 reservoir sand) and nine (9) polymer flood injectors in three (3) separate Lower Driza zones (D5, D4, and D3 reservoir sands) in the southern part of the main Patos-Marinza oilfield. The Company plans to convert an additional three (3) to six (6) wells to injection in the second quarter of 2014.
In the first quarter of 2014, the Company completed maintenance turnaround on the remaining two (2) trains of the Central Treating Facility. The third satellite treatment facility is in the final stages of construction and will be operational in the second quarter along with the sludge treatment facility which is nearing completion as well.
The Company continues to maintain a diluent blend of approximately 8%, a result of the improved treating process over the past year.
In the coming year, Bankers will remain focused on key infrastructure projects aimed at reducing costs and optimizing operations, including field electrification, flow-lines, sour treatment facilities, gas gathering and additional cascade systems.
Government of Albania Fiscal Changes for 2014
Over the course of the first quarter, Management of Bankers has been in regular discussions with the Government of Albanian with regard to the previously announced fiscal changes and tax law related amendments. The Company has received assurances from the Government that a financial offset will be offered to mitigate the impact of fiscal changes which were approved at the end of 2013. A formal agreement is expected to be finalized in the second quarter of 2014.
"The Company is encouraged by the progress that has been made and expects to reach a formal agreement with the Government of Albania with regard to an offset mechanism for Excise Tax which was implemented on April 1, 2014 as well as other changes included in the 2014 fiscal package. The Company continues to carry out its 2014 capital program as originally conceived and foresees minimal impact on our ongoing business with the government assurances. With the addition of a sixth drilling rig, continued emphasis on margin expansion, and further validation of our water and polymer flood programs, Bankers is excited about our continued momentum into 2014," commented David French, President and Chief Executive Officer of Bankers Petroleum.
Updated Corporate Presentation
For additional information on this Operational Update, please see the Company's April 2014 corporate presentation at www.bankerspetroleum.com.
The Management of Bankers will host a conference call on April 8, 2014, at 6:30 am MDT to discuss this Operational Update. Following Management's presentation there will be a question and answer session for analysts and investors.
To participate in the conference call, please contact the conference operator ten minutes prior to the call at 1-888-231-8191 or 1-647-427-7450. A live audio web cast of the conference call will also be available on Bankers website at www.bankerspetroleum.com or by entering the following URL into your web browser, http://www.newswire.ca/en/webcast/detail/1331909/1471999.
The web cast will be archived two hours after the presentation on the website, and posted on the website for 90 days. A replay of the call will be available until April 22, 2014 by dialing 1-855-859-2056 or 1-416-849-0833 and entering access code 23433364.
Caution Regarding Forward-looking Information
Information in this news release respecting matters such as the expected future production levels from wells, future prices and netback, work plans, anticipated total oil recovery of the Patos-Marinza and Kuçova oilfields constitute forward-looking information. Statements containing forward-looking information express, as at the date of this news release, the Company's plans, estimates, forecasts, projections, expectations, or beliefs as to future events or results and are believed to be reasonable based on information currently available to the Company.
Exploration for oil is a speculative business that involves a high degree of risk. The Company's expectations for its Albanian operations and plans are subject to a number of risks in addition to those inherent in oil production operations, including: that Brent oil prices could fall resulting in reduced returns and a change in the economics of the project; availability of financing; delays associated with equipment procurement, equipment failure and the lack of suitably qualified personnel; the inherent uncertainty in the estimation of reserves; exports from Albania being disrupted due to unplanned disruptions; and changes in the political or economic environment.
Production and netback forecasts are based on a number of assumptions including that the rate and cost of well takeovers, well reactivations and well recompletions of the past will continue and success rates will be similar to those rates experienced for previous well recompletions/reactivations/development; that further wells taken over and recompleted will produce at rates similar to the average rate of production achieved from wells recompletions/reactivations/development in the past; continued availability of the necessary equipment, personnel and financial resources to sustain the Company's planned work program; continued political and economic stability in Albania; the existence of reserves as expected; the continued release by Albpetrol of areas and wells pursuant to the Plan of Development and Addendum; the absence of unplanned disruptions; the ability of the Company to successfully drill new wells and bring production to market; and general risks inherent in oil and gas operations.
Forward-looking statements and information are based on assumptions that financing, equipment and personnel will be available when required and on reasonable terms, none of which are assured and are subject to a number of other risks and uncertainties described under "Risk Factors" in the Company's Annual Information Form and Management's Discussion and Analysis, which are available on SEDAR under the Company's profile at www.sedar.com.
There can be no assurance that forward-looking statements will prove to be accurate. Actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking information and forward looking statements.
Review by Qualified Person
This release was reviewed by Suneel Gupta, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Bankers Petroleum Ltd., who is a "qualified person" under the rules and policies of AIM in his role with the Company and due to his training as a professional petroleum engineer (member of APEGA) with over 20 years' experience in domestic and international oil and gas operations.
About Bankers Petroleum Ltd.
Bankers Petroleum Ltd. is a Canadian-based oil and gas exploration and production company focused on developing large oil and gas reserves. In Albania, Bankers operates and has the full rights to develop the Patos-Marinza heavy oilfield, has a 100% interest in the Kuçova oilfield, and a 100% interest in Exploration Block "F". Bankers' shares are traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange and the AIM Market in London, England under the stock symbol BNK.
SOURCE: Bankers Petroleum Ltd.
For further information:
David French President and Chief Executive Officer, (403) 513-6930
Doug Urch Executive VP, Finance and Chief Financial Officer, (403) 513-2691
Laura Bechtel Investor Relations Analyst, (403) 513-3428
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