Oando Plc, an indigenous energy group, has said its crude oil production increased by 15 per cent to 16,876 barrels per day in the first half of 2019.
The group, while announcing its unaudited results for the six months period ended June 30, 2019, said its natural gas production increased by eight per cent from 118.87 million cubic feet per day in the H1 2018 to 128.53 million cubic feet in the H1 2019.
The Group Chief Executive, Oando, Mr Wale Tinubu, said in a statement, “Half-year 2019 was a positive period for us as we achieved strong top and bottom line earnings despite our overall performance being tempered by a one-off N14bn charge.
“Our crude oil and natural gas production grew by 15 per cent and eight per cent, respectively compared to the similar period last year while we also achieved a significant reduction in our reserve based lending facility to approximately $0.4m from $450m at inception – a 99 per cent reduction.”
He noted that Oando concluded the divestment of its residual interest in Axxela for $41.5m, in line with its strategy of divesting from non-strategic assets.
“Looking ahead, our focus will be on achieving further growth and profitability by delivering on our production growth initiatives through strategic alliances and partnerships,” Tinubu added.
The group’s profit after tax declined by 16 per cent to N7.2bn from N8.5bn in the H1 2018.
It said capital expenditure of $62.3m (N22.5bn) was incurred in the period under review compared to $24.7m (N8.9bn) in same period in 2018.
The statement said, “In the H1 2019, Oando Trading traded approximately 7.3 million barrels of crude oil under various contracts with the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and delivered 228,970 metric tonnes of refined products.
“Total group borrowing for the period stood at N200.7bn, a five per cent decrease from the FYE 2018 (N210.9bn) while in our upstream specifically, our borrowing reduced by 13 per cent to $221.3m, compared to $255.6m in the FYE 2018.”
Oando said it had reduced its debt by 58 per cent from N473.3bn in 2014 while its upstream borrowing had reduced by about 72 per cent from $801.6m in 2014.
It said, “Oil prices have averaged $65 per barrel for most of 2019 and we shall continue employing price protection strategy by hedging our production.
“Our focus will be largely on driving profitability via growth in our upstream business where we will pursue production growth initiatives through strategic alliances, whilst ensuring operational efficiency and fiscal prudence.”