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ExxonMobil Closing in on Payara Project Deal With Guyana

Zacks Equity Research
·3 mins read

Exxon Mobil Corporation’s XOM Payara project is reportedly close to achieving a milestone as the local government is likely to land a deal with the project operator. The energy major is expected to commit to stricter environmental restrictions for the Payara development.

The volume of gas flared at Guyana’s Liza-1 well by ExxonMobil and dumping of polluted water in the sea were under scrutiny by several environmental groups. As such, the company is now anticipated to commit to stricter gas flaring and wastewater restrictions. It is already producing below capacity at the first phase of the Liza project due to mechanical issues associated with the gas compression equipment. It was expected to reach 120,000 barrels per of oil per day (bpd) production capacity in August.

The company intends to produce 220,000 bpd from the Payara development. It will be the third major development at the Stabroek block, located offshore Guyana. The project has already witnessed delays due to political impasse from March elections. With the installation of President Irfan Ali-led government, the process is expected to speed up. More project delays can potentially push back its plan of bringing the Payara project online by 2023. The company is awaiting some government approvals, which, upon receipt, will enable the firm to make a final investment decision for the field’s development, per Reuters. 

The company made 18 world-class oil discoveries at the block. The company estimates gross recoverable resource of more than 8 billion oil-equivalent barrels from the region. Moreover, the firm projects daily Guyana oil production volumes of more than 750,000 gross barrels by 2025. The discovery in the South American country is expected to transform its poor economy in the coming days. Notably, Guyana’s name was added to the list of oil producing countries late last year.

Esso Exploration and Production Guyana Limited, a subsidiary of ExxonMobil, is the operator in the Stabroek Block with a 45% stake. The respective subsidiaries of Hess Corporation HES and CNOOC Limited CEO have 30% and 25% interest in the block.

Price Performance

The stock has lost 7.6% in the past six months compared with 12.7% fall of the industry it belongs to.

Zacks Rank & Stock to Consider

Currently, ExxonMobil has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). A better-ranked player in the energy space is Equinor ASA EQNR, holding a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Equinor’s bottom line for 2021 is expected to rise 118.2% year over year.

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CNOOC Limited (CEO) : Free Stock Analysis Report
Exxon Mobil Corporation (XOM) : Free Stock Analysis Report
Hess Corporation (HES) : Free Stock Analysis Report
Equinor ASA (EQNR) : Free Stock Analysis Report
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