Oil Search beats FY production forecast

Full-year revenue and full-year production lift compared to prior year but December quarter production falls slightly.

Oil Search (OSH) has lifted 2014 production guidance after 2013 production slightly exceeded forecasts and lifted compared with the prior year, although its December quarter production fell slightly.

In a statement to the Australian Securities Exchange, Oil Search said its full-year 2013 production was 6.74 million barrels of oil equivalent (mmboe), slightly above the 6.2 mmboe to 6.7 mmboe guidance range and 6% higher than in full-year 2012.

Total revenue for the full year was $US766.3 million, a six per cent increase from the $US724.6 million posted in 2012.

December quarter production was 1.77 mmboe, down from the 1.79 mmboe posted in the December 2012 quarter.

Revenue for the December 2013 quarter was $US210 million, down from the $US218.2 million posted in the previous corresponding period.

Oil Search lifted its full-year 2014 production guidance to 12 mmboe to 15 mmboe, up from 10 mmboe to 13 mmboe.

The Papua New Guinea LNG project was more than 90% complete and remained on budget at the end of 2013, with first LNG sales still expected in the second half of 2014, Oil Search said.

The group said it had a cash balance of $US210 million and debt of $US4.02 billion at the end of December 2013.