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Bloomberg: PetroChina Crude Oil Output Rises, Outpacing Shell, Chevron

By Ying Lou

Oct. 15 (Bloomberg) — PetroChina Co., the nation’s biggest oil company, increased oil and gas output 5.6 percent, outpacing production growth at Royal Dutch Shell Plc and Chevron Corp.

Oil and gas production in the third-quarter climbed to the equivalent of 275.4 million barrels (about 3 million barrels a day), the Beijing-based company said in a statement on its Web site. Crude output rose 2.6 percent and gas production gained 17 percent from July to September.

PetroChina will outspend Exxon Mobil Corp., Shell and BP Plc this year to expand supplies to the world’s fastest-growing major economy. A government-backed drive to acquire overseas energy assets and open domestic fields for exploration has enabled Chinese companies to pump more oil and gas as production at their rivals falters.

“While global peers are sounding warnings of declining oil production in the second half of 2007, PetroChina continued to deliver meaningful growth on a large base,” Gordon Kwan, head of China energy research at CLSA Ltd. said Oct. 13. “Bullish third-quarter operating statistics could enlarge the scope of earnings upgrades.”

PetroChina shares rose as much as 10.4 percent to HK$18.34 and traded at HK$18.28 at the market’s midday break, heading for a record. The stock has surged 63 percent this year, more than the 44 percent increase in the benchmark Hang Seng Index.

Crude Oil

Crude oil production climbed to 212.3 million barrels in the last quarter and natural gas output rose to 371.1 billion cubic feet, PetroChina said. The company is managing output from the Daqing field, the nation’s biggest and oldest, to extend its productive life.

Shell’s second-quarter oil and gas production fell 2.3 percent to the equivalent of 3.18 million barrels, the company said in July. Chevron’s output fell 1.1 percent to 2.6 million barrels in the second quarter, it said Oct. 10.

Total production climbed 4.3 percent to the equivalent of 828.1 million barrels in the first nine months, PetroChina said. Third-quarter output reached the equivalent of 275.4 million barrels of oil.

Oil production rose 0.9 percent to 632 million barrels in the first nine months. The company sold crude at an average $60.94 a barrel during the nine months, a 0.91 percent decrease from a year earlier.

Oil output from the company’s overseas fields was 37.9 million barrels in the first nine months, and gas production was 33.2 billion cubic feet.

Gas, Refining

Natural gas output climbed 17 percent to 1.176 trillion cubic feet from January through September. The company sold the gas at $2.55 per thousand cubic feet in the first nine months, up 4.1 percent from a year earlier.

The company processed 203.7 million barrels of oil into fuels at its refineries during the last quarter. In the nine months crude processing increased 5.2 percent to 611.4 million barrels.

Gasoline production in the first three quarters fell 0.9 percent to 16.1 million metric tons, with the realized price rising 4.04 percent to $535.89 a ton. Output for the third quarter reached 5.434 million tons.

Nine-month diesel production rose 7.9 percent to 35.5 million tons, including 11.6 million tons in the third quarter. PetroChina sold the car fuel at $553.97 a ton in the nine months, an increase of 11.05 percent.

Kerosene output over the nine months fell 2.3 percent to 1.5 million tons, PetroChina said today. The company sold the fuel at $607.71 a ton during the period, compared with $553.42 a year earlier, and produced 542,000 tons of kerosene in the three months ended Sept. 30.

PetroChina’s ethylene production rose 24.2 percent in the nine months to 1.9 million tons. Third-quarter output of the chemical, a raw material used to make plastics, was 587,000 tons.

The number of retail service stations operated by PetroChina rose 5.1 percent in the year to Sept. 30 to 18,846, the company said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Ying Lou in Hong Kong at [email protected] .

Last Updated: October 15, 2007 01:18 EDT

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