Colombia-focused oil companies dutifully did their 2019 planning, a meticulous process requiring formal Board approval, which can take many months to complete. But at the beginning of October, Brent started to slide nearly 37%, from US$84.16 on October 5th to US$53.21 on December 28th, although it was up considerably last week (Jan 4th) to US$57.06.
The Constitutional Court has been active lately, addressing a number of important issues like the apparent legal conflict between the central government’s ownership of the subsoil resources and local communities’ rights to determine what happens on the surface. We were talking with Hernán Rodríguez, Partner at Dentons, Cárdenas and Cárdenas about the conundrum and he offered this discussion of so-called ‘Cumaral ruling’ which resolves some issues but introduces others.
Like most everyone else in the industry, Ecopetrol (NYSE:EC) is having a great year financially and statistically. However, the integrated nature of the the NOC means it takes a bit of work to see what is happening in just the E&P business.
Dear A: Thanks for the Don Julio Reposado the other night in your apartment. It was the perfect antidote to a damp and cold Bogotá night. I looked up the El Tiempo anti-fracking article that had disturbed you so much and it was full of so many half-truths and complete falsehoods, that I wrote this letter to clarify it for you.
At the Oil and Gas Summit, both MinMinas Maria Fernanda Suárez and ANH head Luis Miguel Morelli promised a competitiveness study to see where Colombia had to improve its regulation. The well-respected Canadian extractive-industry think-tank, the Fraser Institute (FI) has either done that for them or given them a place to start.
The ‘100-days’ stories were a week or two ago and I had planned to write a ‘Duque-year-end-in-review’ article on December 17th, my last ‘long-form’ article of the year. But well-respected think-tank Inter-American Dialogue published this report last Friday and I thought I should take advantage of the multiple points of view.
On paper, Colombia has about 11 years of gas reserves. But the production forecast shows shortfalls occurring very shortly. Getting investors to search for domestic gas should be a regulatory priority but a better gas netback would also help their decisions.
This week we have a thoughtful (and beautifully written) reflection by Luis Pacheco on the great controversy of our industry: the struggle to find a balance between development and conservation. MinAmbiente Ricardo Lozano’s set phrase – produce while conserving and conserve while producing – sounds great but reality is far more complex as Luis shows us here.
The results for Colombia-focused companies are published, so we updated our statistics on oil prices and netbacks. It was not a great quarter but not a bad one either. As always, individual results may vary; we are looking at Colombian averages.