Cenovus’s 2018 budget continues focus on deleveraging

Cenovus Energy Inc. (TSX: CVE) (NYSE: CVE) plans to invest between $1.5 billion and $1.7 billion in 2018, with the majority of the budget allocated to sustain base production at the company’s oil sands operations. The remaining capital will primarily support continued construction at the phase G oil sands expansion at Christina Lake, where costs are coming in below original expectations, and a targeted drilling program in the Deep Basin. This budget reflects Cenovus’s focus on capital discipline, cost reduction and deleveraging.

Highlights: (2018 budget vs. Nov. 1, 2017 guidance)

Per-barrel oil sands operating costs – down 8%

Per-barrel Deep Basin operating costs – down 11%

Per-barrel oil sands sustaining capital costs – down 12%

Christina Lake phase G go-forward capital efficiencies – a 21% improvement (vs. previous estimate)

Total oil sands production – up 26%

“Our priorities for 2018 are to reduce costs and deleverage our balance sheet while maintaining capital discipline. The sooner we can achieve our long-term debt ratio goal, the sooner we can move to balance returning cash to shareholders with disciplined investments in high-return growth,” said Alex Pourbaix, Cenovus President & Chief Executive Officer.

“We will build on the success of our divestiture program and work to exceed the goal, established in June of this year, of achieving $1 billion in cumulative capital, operating and general and administrative cost reductions with the aim of accelerating these reductions over the next two years instead of three.”

Source / More: Cenovus Energy Inc.

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