Canadian Natural predicts higher spending and greater natural gas production in 2022

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Improving prices, along with increased ownership of drill targets in northern Alberta and British Columbia (BC), are expected to help natural gas production grow by 18% per year. in 2022, Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. said on Tuesday.

Calgary’s exploration and production (E&P) company has announced its 2022 budget with a natural gas target of 1.98 to 2 Bcf / d versus 1.69 Bcf / d in 2021. Planned capital spending is expected to increase 25% to C $ 4.34 billion ($ 3.47 billion) from C $ 3.48 billion ($ 2.78 billion).

Gas prices are expected to maintain the gains of 2021.

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The E&P predicts that gas prices in Canada this year are expected to average C $ 3.25 / gigajoule at the AECO hub, with US gas averaging $ 3.00 / MMBtu at the Henry hub.

Canadian Natural has already recorded production gains this year to date of 136 million cubic feet of gas and 5,600 barrels of natural gas liquids after closing a C $ 960 million (C $ 768 million) takeover. ) by Storm Resources Ltd.

The Storm acquisition also included 170 square miles of rights to drill in the Montney Shale, the primary development area for the production of shale gas and liquids in Canada. The Montney straddles northeastern British Columbia and northwestern Alberta.

Alberta’s oil sands production is expected to be stable this year at 690,000-715,000 bpd, the E&P said. The upkeep and improvements to the pants also set the stage for growth in the following years.

After high oil and gas prices reduced corporate debt by 34% to C $ 14 billion ($ 11.2 billion) in 2021, shareholder returns are expected. Total promised dividends and share buybacks for 2021 plus 2022 exceed C $ 10 billion ($ 8 billion).

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