19 February 2015, Lagos – Eni, the Italian oil and gas group, is to cut capital spending this year in response to the collapse in crude prices, reporting on Wednesday a one-third slide in operating profits in the fourth quarter of last year.
Adding to the list of big energy companies hit by a near 50 per cent slide in the price of oil since last summer, the company said adjusted operating profit fell 33.8 per cent to €2.3bn in the last three months of 2014 from the same period the previous year, although that was better than analysts’ estimates it would be down to €1.9bn.
The group, according to the Financial Times, said it would cut capital spending this year, as other oil majors have done, but did not put a figure on this in its results statement.
The chief executive of the company, Claudio Descalzi, has recently pointed to expectations of industry-wide cuts to capital spending of 10 to 13 per cent in 2015.
“In the context of lower oil prices, in 2015 Eni’s management plans to implement capital project optimisation and rescheduling which will reduce expenditure compared to the 2014 levels,” the company said on Wednesday. Capital spending last year was €12.2bn, five per cent lower than in 2013.