SCHLUMBERGER, the world’s largest oilfield service company, said yesterday that oil operators were likely to start increasing their spending on new projects.
Oil prices have steadied at $70-$80 a barrel, giving some confidence to energy firms to begin spending on new wells after prices plunged at the end of 2008. Global spending on oil and gas exploration and production is likely to rise 11% this year following a 15% drop in 2009, according to a Barclays Capital survey released last month.
Schlumberger chief executive Andrew Gould said: “Consensus forecasts predict that oil demand in 2010 will increase, particularly in the developing world, for the first time since 2007. As a result, we feel that oil prices are likely to be sustained at current levels and that as our customers’ confidence grows, their exploration and production budgets will increase.
“Longer term, we remain confident that considerably increased spending will be necessary to maintain sufficient reserves and production of hydrocarbons to meet the world’s needs. We are strongly positioned to capture growth opportunities as our customers begin to increase their investment.”
Schlumberger reported full-year 2009 revenue of £14billion compared with £16.76billion in 2008. Net income was £1.94billion against £3.37billion in 2008.