Whitecap Resources Inc. Announces 2019 Capital Budget and Outlook to 88,000 – 90,000 Boe/d Over the Next Three Years
WHITECAP RESOURCES INC. ANNOUNCES 2019 CAPITAL BUDGET AND OUTLOOK TO 88,000 – 90,000 BOE/D OVER THE NEXT THREE YEARS
CALGARY, ALBERTA – Whitecap Resources Inc. ("Whitecap" or the "Company") (TSX: WCP) is pleased to announce that its Board of Directors has approved a $425 - $475 million capital budget for 2019 that includes the drilling of 220 (191.5 net) horizontal wells. The 2019 capital program and the annual dividend of $0.324 per share is expected to be fully funded by internally generated funds flow.
Canadian crude oil price differentials, and associated short term contracts, have been positively impacted by the Alberta Government’s recent announcement curtailing 325,000 barrels a day of Alberta crude oil production effective January 1, 2019 to help reduce the excess crude in storage, and their intention to purchase rail cars to transport an additional 120,000 barrels a day out of the province starting in late 2019. Longer term, Canada needs additional export pipelines (Keystone XL, Trans Mountain Expansion and Enbridge Line 3 Replacement) to ensure that we receive a fair price for our natural resources for the benefit of all Canadians. With the extreme volatility in both West Texas Intermediate (“WTI”) and Canadian differentials, Whitecap has elected to take a cautious and defensive approach in the 1H/2019 by reducing capital spending compared to the prior year with a focus on debt reduction. We will continue to monitor the impact of the production curtailments, progress of the export pipelines and commodity prices to determine if any adjustments are required to our preliminary 2H/2019 plans.
In 2016 and 2017, Whitecap was opportunistic in acquiring premium light oil assets with low base production declines and strong operating netbacks. In aggregate, we acquired approximately 30,000 boe/d for $1.4 billion with a base decline rate of less than 10%. With WTI prices currently at US$50 - $55/bbl in combination with wider Canadian crude oil differentials, the benefits of having assets with long life, low production declines and high operating netbacks become increasingly more important. These production assets generate significant free funds flow and complement our short cycle, high rate of return drilling inventory. This balance provides stability in times of volatile commodity prices but also provides flexibility to rapidly increase production growth when realized prices provide higher returns on capital invested.
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