QUITO – Ecuadorian state-owned oil company Petroamazonas said it expected to avoid a decline in investment and production levels in 2016 despite the steep drop in global crude prices.
Petroamazonas is forecasting average output of 350,000 barrels per day next year, similar to the 2015 level, the company’s chief executive, Oswaldo Madrid, told EFE in an interview Wednesday.
He added that he was also seeking a 2016 budget similar to this year’s but that the executive and legislative branches would determine that amount in the coming weeks.
“We’re closer to completing a year that’s been quite difficult,” Madrid said, noting that crude prices of less than $40 a barrel have affected the oil industry worldwide.
“The important thing is that the necessary actions have been taken (by the OPEC member) to overcome the difficulties in the best possible way,” he added.
“Although oil activity is not (currently) generating the same revenues as before, it’s still profitable” and remains a key source of government funding, Madrid said.
Lower revenues have had an impact on investment, as the company has been forced to channel resources toward the “most productive activities,” the chief executive added.
Petroamazonas’ financial hit has not yet prompted staff cutbacks, although Madrid said that possibility would be contemplated if necessary.