The suspension of production in the second quarter of 2020 at the Wassana oilfield offshore Thailand saw financially compromised independent KrisEnergy’s crude production last year fall by 55.3% compared to 2019.

Fourth quarter 2020 oil output was down 81.3% versus the same three months one year prior.

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“In view of the many uncertainties – the duration of the [coronavirus] pandemic, speed of global economic regeneration and recovery in petroleum demand, and the magnitude and sustainability of any upturn in oil prices – production at Wassana was suspended in the second quarter 2020,” said KrisEnergy.

The floating storage and offloading vessel (FSO) Rubicon Vantage was disconnected from the CALM buoy and demobilised in July from the field on the G10/48 concession.

As a result of the shut-in, Wassana’s gross production last year was 1397 bpd of oil with Singapore-headquartered operator KrisEnergy’s net share of output being 1243 bpd.

This curtailed production coupled with lower commodity prices hit KrisEnergy’s 2020 revenues, which decreased 64.1% year-on-year to US$45.4 million. In addition, non-cash impairment charges of goodwill and assets amounted to US$97 million as a result of lower future oil price assumptions and expiry of an exploration concession.

Although net cash flow from operating activities last year remained positive at US$11.5 million, the operator on Wednesday posted a 2020 net loss of US$201.09 million against a US$168.86 million net loss in 2019.

The net loss recorded last year deepened KrisEnergy’s capital deficiency position to US$346.1 million and its net current liability position to US$604.9 million as of 31 December last year. Total debt recognised on the group’s balance sheet was US$578.8 million and gearing increased to 248.7%.

KrisEnergy’s working interest production in 2020 averaged 7065 barrels of oil equivalent per day, 30.9% lower than one year prior – mainly because of the suspension at the Wassana field.

Output was also hit by reduced contracted gas sales from the B8/32 concession in the Gulf of Thailand and government-mandated cuts to gas production rates at Block 9 onshore Bangladesh between end-March and May 2020.

KrisEnergy has been pinning its hopes on boosting total production thanks to the recently brought on stream Apsara oilfield offshore Cambodia although it remains to be seen whether the project will deliver as hoped.

All five development wells in the Apsara Mini Phase 1A development have been completed and came on line between 28 December 2020 and 22 February 2021, with the last two wells achieving first oil in the past few days.

However, the operator admitted on Wednesday that the production rates being seen at Apsara are less than the initial peak forecast of 7500 bpd of oil.

“Optimisation of production continues, and more pressure and production data are needed for further assessment to determine reservoir characteristics before more clarity on a sustainable production rate and achievable volumes can be made available,” said KrisEnergy.

The Apsara Mini Phase 1A development incorporates a mini platform, production barge and an FSO.

The FSO Rubicon Vantage is being upgraded for the Cambodian field and in the meantime oil products tanker MT Strovolos is providing crude storage. The MT Strovolos, which arrived on location at Apsara in early November, is on a four-month time charter that has two one-month options.