Feb. 26 (UPI) — Canadian oil producer Husky Energy said Friday it managed to turn a profit in the fourth quarter on the back of steady gains in total production.
“This past year has been challenging for the sector, but by responding quickly to the new pricing environment, Husky is well-positioned for the next phase of growth,” CEO Rob Peabody said in a statement.
A profit of around $140 million for the fourth quarter came as Husky reported gains in production to 327,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day and steady cash flows.
Husky entered the decade with a program designed to focus more on projects with a longer shelf life and lower operating costs. With a 2016 objective of establishing a stronger foundation in an era of market volatility, the company said more than 40 percent of its production would come from low-cost projects.
The Canadian energy sector as a whole was hobbled by the low price for crude last year. The country is mostly landlocked as an energy exporter and relies almost exclusively on the United States as a destination for crude oil.
Despite Husky’s production boast, fourth quarter production was down more than 8 percent year-on-year. The company said the decline from 2015 was more of a reflection of the disposal of some of its assets than market pressures.
The company said its realized price for crude oil in the fourth quarter was $49.29, compared with $42.18 for the same quarter in 2015. Alberta, where Husky has its headquarters, said the provincial economy was turning the corner in part because of the improved oil market situation, but was still facing headwinds.
Husky last year deployed hundreds of personnel to Saskatchewan after a pipeline ruptured and released about 1,500 barrels of oil. The company said its monitoring systems recorded a pressure anomaly, but no leak, on the pipeline system the night before the spill.