Canadian Natural Resources forecasts higher spending, production in 2022

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Jan 11 (Reuters) – Canadian Natural Resources Ltd on Tuesday joined its rivals in forecasting higher capital expenditure and production in 2022, as it bets on a sustained recovery of oil and gas prices from the pandemic-driven historic lows.

Canadian producers are raising their full-year expenditures as they benefit from rallying crude and gas prices. However, companies are opting to spend on buybacks, dividends and squeezing more barrels out of existing assets instead of taking on large expansion projects.

Last month, Canadian Natural’s (CNRL) rivals, Suncor Energy Inc, Cenovus Energy Inc and Imperial Oil Ltd , had raised their capital expenditure and output expectations for 2022.

Canadian Natural, the country’s biggest oil and natural gas producer expects to spend C(dollar)4.35 billion ((dollar)3.44 billion) in 2022, higher than its 2021 estimate of C(dollar)3.48 billion.

The Calgary, Alberta-based producer also said it expects total production to be between 1.27 million and 1.32 million barrels of oil equivalent per day (boepd) this year, compared with the 1.19 million to 1.26 million boepd it had estimated for 2021.

((dollar)1 1.2635 Canadian dollars) (Reporting by Ruhi Soni in Bengaluru; Editing by Amy Caren Daniel)

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