At a recent conference in Cartagena, MinMinas Renjifo gave a ‘state of the industry’ speech. We did not care much for what he said about policy (see several articles last week) but this MinMinas press release is part of a necessary campaign to remind Colombians of the benefits of a well-running energy and mining sector. Translated and with comments by Hydrocarbons Colombia.
As reported by Caracol Radio, Congress will discuss the lawsuit between Ecopetrol and Pacific Rubiales for Quifa field exploitation. According to Senator Jorge Enrique Robledo, Pacific cannot refuse to pay Ecopetrol 1.5M oil barrels (equivalent to US$382M), after the Colombian courts ruled in favor of Ecopetrol.
Chilean operator with participation from Korean industrial giant LG has published its first set of annual results after purchasing Winchester Luna and Hupecol in early 2012. From a corporate perspective all of its absolute indicators are up significantly because of success in Chile and the acquisition of significant production in Colombia. However, as the graph shows, EBITDA margins in Colombia are poorer than the Colombian average (which was pulled down by poor results at Canacol) and much poorer than the company’s operations in Chile.
The second day of a two-day conference can be light on content, but a session on infrastructure at the CWC Oil and Gas Summit and Exhibition in Cartagena provided useful updates on Puerto Bahia, the Bicentennial Pipeline, the proposed Pacific Pipeline and other projects. Since most commentators put infrastructure high in the list of current challenges for the Colombian industry, the session was timely.
France’s EFE news agency interviewed Oscar Villadiego, board chairman of the Regional Association of Oil, Gas and Biofuels Industry in Latin America and the Caribbean (ARPEL). Villadiego said that Latin America and the Caribbean form a region “full of opportunities” to produce hydrocarbons, adding that “more space should be given to new technologies to better and more dynamically develop these resources.”
We wrote a few weeks ago that ‘Debt is the new black’ about how Colombian oil and gas companies were using debt rather than equity. At the CWC Oil and Gas Summitt and Exhibition in Cartagena recently, Scotiabank’s Rolf Schmitz gave a good explanation of why there is a strong interest in M&A in Colombia but that companies are using debt rather than equity to finance their activities.