Heritage Oil jumps six per cent as Nigerian output is back on track

Suzie Neuwirth
HERITAGE Oil’s shares jumped over six per cent yesterday morning after an update showed that the oil explorer had overcome production issues in Nigeria.

The FTSE 250-listed firm said that production at its recently acquired ‘OML 30’ Nigerian oil field had returned to over 35,000 barrels of oil per day (bopd) and that all key fields in the country are back in production.

In the first quarter, engineering issues and local worker strikes sent Nigerian output plummeting down to 6,932 bopd after a number of fields were shut down.

“These issues serve as a reminder of the challenges involved in operating in the Niger Delta region,” Tim Hurst-Brown, research analyst at Mirabaud Securities, told City A.M. last month.

The drilling of new wells is planned to commence in the second half of 2014 and is estimated to raise production to around 300,000 bopd.

“We are delighted that production levels are back over 35,000 bopd gross for the licence and that the issues encountered earlier in the year have been resolved,” said chief executive Tony Buckingham.

“The work schedule is progressing in line with our update last month and we are on track to meet our production target for the full year.”

Heritage Oil’s shares closed 4.6 per cent lower at 142.4p.