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Pecom to double 2003 capex

Bnamericas Published: Thursday, March 13, 2003
Argentine energy company Pecom Energia will double its capital expenditure plan from 2002 in peso terms to the equivalent of US$300mn-400mn in 2003, company executives said in a conference call Thursday. The money will help boost oil production in 2003, which the company has targeted at an average of 165,000 barrels/day. About half of the capital expenditure will be in Argentina, CFO Carlos Alvarez said, adding that its exact distribution will depend on how things evolve during the year. The production target figure is down from the 172,000b/d averaged in 2002, mainly due to lower output in Venezuela where the effects of the national strike will be felt, exploration and production (E&P) business development and planning manager Federico Irrgang said. Venezuela output will average 40,000b/d, Argentina 100,000b/d, Peru 13,000b/d and new production in Ecuador will add some 3-4,000b/d in 2003, Irrgang said. Pecom does not have any production forecasts for 2004, he added. In Ecuador, Pecom continues seeking E&P partners for block 31, where Pecom has completed drilling an exploration well that will lead to better early production, Irrgang said, adding that the company has already presented its development plan to local authorities. This year Pecom will drill a well on the block's Minca prospect, which will yield improved exploration data. Its other main project in Ecuador is block 18, where it has already drilled a highly successful well and has plans to drill a two more this year, Irrgang continued.

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