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Exxon Produces First Gas from Damar

Zacks Equity Research

Oil giant ExxonMobil Corporation (XOM) produced its first gas from its Damar field, off the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia.

The Damar project is an initiative by ExxonMobil, Petronas Carigali and Petronas, whereby the three parties inked a gas production sharing contract. ExxonMobil’s subsidiary, ExxonMobil Exploration and Production Malaysia Inc., the operator of the field, holds a 50% interest in the project. The remaining 50% is held by Petronas Carigali.

The field is forecasted to have a capacity of 200 million cubic feet of gas per day. Both partners have proposed a total of 16 development wells for the platform.

The project follows closely behind the earlier announced Telok gas development in Malaysia. The Telok gas project was commissioned in Mar 2013. With a common goal of providing incremental gas supplies to facilitate power and industrial needs in Malaysia, both the projects support the growth of the country’s natural gas industry.

ExxonMobil is fairly active in its investment program. The company plans to spend about $185 billion over the next five years – up 29% from the last five-year period. The capex covers as many as 21 important oil and gas projects currently under the anvil and are estimated to accumulate over 1 million net oil-equivalent barrels per day by 2016.

The company boasts diversified operations across the world with several new projects expected to come online through 2014. While Exxon functions in all corners of the globe, the areas of focus for the coming years include the U.S., Canada, Kazakhstan, West Africa, Australia, Russia, Angola and Iraq for new volumes. On the exploration front, it includes unconventional natural gas across North America as well as offshore regions, including the Gulf of Mexico. Notably, Exxon achieved success in the exploration of a well in offshore Tanzania, where it came across a massive amount of recoverable gas of high quality.

ExxonMobil carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). However, there are other stocks in the oil and gas sector – Helmerich & Payne, Inc. (HP), Matrix Service Company (MTRX) and Cabot Oil & Gas Corporation (COG) – which hold a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) and are expected to perform better.

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