30 April 2014, News Wires – More than 30 attacks on infrastructure leading to disruption and project delays caused more woe for Colombia’s Ecopetrol, where net profit also sank in the first quarter.
Production was also down a sizeable amount in the period, while the state-owned player had to contend with large drops in average energy prices.
Militants have long hampered Ecopetrol’s operations, causing production outages as pipelines and associated infrastructure have faced attack.
The first three months of the year saw 33 such incidents, with blockades from some disgruntled community members also leading to delays in exploration and production projects. Two major pipeline construction projects were also affected.
Production slumped 3.8% year-on-year to 765,700 barrels of oil equivalent per day, although consolidated revenues rose from 16.75 trillion Colombian pesos ($8.67 billion) to 18.26 trillion pesos.
Consolidated net profit dropped from 3.4 billion pesos to 3.29 billion pesos, although operating profit was up 6% to 5.88 billion pesos.
Ecopetrol said average crude prices sank 8.1% quarter-on-quarter, with products prices down 5.3% and gas prices down 16.3%. The company also had to contend with higher transportation costs.