CALGARY, Alberta, April 11, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Gran Tierra Energy Inc. ("Gran Tierra" or the "Company") (NYSE American:GTE) (TSX:GTE) (LSE:GTE) is pleased to announce that the Company has entered into an agreement with Ecopetrol S.A. ("Ecopetrol"), the national oil company of Colombia, by which the parties renegotiated the terms and the duration of the contract for the Suroriente Block ("Suroriente") in the Department of Putumayo, which was scheduled to end in mid-2024 (the "Agreement"). All dollar amounts are in United States ("U.S.") dollars unless otherwise indicated.
The Agreement provides an opportunity to add significant value, as well as economic life, to Suroriente by continuing its duration for 20 years from the Agreement's effective date. The additional term of the contract allows long-term investment in infrastructure and work programs to enhance oil recovery efficiency in existing fields, and appraisal drilling to potentially prolong the life of the fields. Gran Tierra will continue to be the operator of Suroriente and is committing to a capital investment program of $123 million over a three-year period from the Agreement's effective date, expected to be funded by Gran Tierra's internal cash flow.
The Agreement is subject to certain conditions precedent including regulatory approval by the Superintendence of Industry and Commerce of Colombia ("SIC"). The satisfaction of such conditions precedent will determine the Agreement's effective date.
Gran Tierra became the operator of Suroriente in March 2019 with a 52% working interest ("WI"), with Ecopetrol holding the remaining 48% WI. Since becoming the operator, Gran Tierra has been able to increase 100% gross oil production from an average of 6,203 barrels ("bbl") of oil per day ("bopd") in February 2019 to an average of 8,167 bopd during first quarter 2023, an increase of 32%. The Company has also expanded the Cohembi enhanced oil recovery ("EOR") project, which is designed to increase the ultimate oil recovery and value of the block. Suroriente's first quarter 2023 average production of 8,167 bopd gross (4,247 bopd WI) was its second highest quarterly average production average since second quarter 2015, despite no development wells being drilled since first quarter 2018.
The Agreement further strengthens and consolidates Gran Tierra's position as a premier operator and the top contracted area holder in the Putumayo Basin and provides continuity to the Company's long-term business relationship with Ecopetrol. Gran Tierra is the operator of 100% of its Putumayo blocks. The Agreement is also consistent with Gran Tierra's focused strategy to grow the Company's reserves and its portfolio of development and exploration opportunities in the proven, underexplored Putumayo Basin, with access to established infrastructure.
By continuing the tenure of its operatorship of Suroriente, Gran Tierra expects to expand the EOR project in the block through long-term investments, which the Company forecasts to further increase value for all stakeholders. The capital commitment associated with the Agreement also aligns with the Company's preexisting long-term plans to develop Suroriente.
Gary Guidry, President and Chief Executive Officer of Gran Tierra, commented: "The Agreement represents a unique and significant opportunity in Colombia in terms of scale and upside potential while maintaining our long-term partnership with Ecopetrol in the prolific Putumayo Basin. We are excited by the opportunity to continue to develop and expand Suroriente's already successful EOR project in the N Sand zone of the Cohembi oil field. By securing the Agreement, Gran Tierra can now commit to long-term capital projects and development programs with plans of optimizing the oil recovery and value for the Suroriente Block. We believe the combination of Gran Tierra's robust operational expertise in the Putumayo Basin and Ecopetrol's technical knowledge will continue our joint success in the Suroriente Block."
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About Gran Tierra Energy Inc.
Gran Tierra Energy Inc. together with its subsidiaries is an independent international energy company currently focused on oil and natural gas exploration and production in Colombia and Ecuador. The Company is currently developing its existing portfolio of assets in Colombia and Ecuador and will continue to pursue additional growth opportunities that would further strengthen the Company's portfolio. The Company's common stock trades on the NYSE American, the Toronto Stock Exchange and the London Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol GTE. Additional information concerning Gran Tierra is available at www.grantierra.com. Information on the Company's website does not constitute a part of this press release. Investor inquiries may be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org or (403) 265-3221.
Gran Tierra's U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC") filings are available on the SEC website at www.sec.gov. The Company's Canadian securities regulatory filings are available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com and UK regulatory filings are available on the National Storage Mechanism ("the NSM") website at https://data.fca.org.uk/#/nsm/nationalstoragemechanism. Gran Tierra's filings on the SEC, SEDAR and the NSM websites are not incorporated by reference into this press release.
Forward Looking Statements and Legal Advisories:
This press release contains opinions, forecasts, projections, and other statements about future events or results that constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, and financial outlook and forward-looking information within the meaning of applicable Canadian securities laws (collectively, "forward-looking statements"). The use of the words "expect," "plan," "can," "will," "should," "guidance," "forecast," "signal," "progress," and "believes," derivations thereof and similar terms identify forward-looking statements. In particular, but without limiting the foregoing, this press release contains forward-looking statements regarding: the satisfaction of the conditions to the closing of the Agreement, future production and prospects, and the anticipated benefits of the Agreement to Gran Tierra, its shareholders and other stakeholders. The forward-looking statements contained in this press release reflect several material factors and expectations and assumptions of Gran Tierra including, without limitation, that Gran Tierra will continue to conduct its operations in a manner consistent with its current expectations, pricing and cost estimates (including with respect to commodity pricing and exchange rates), and the general continuance of assumed operational, regulatory and industry conditions in Colombia and Ecuador, and the ability of Gran Tierra to execute its business and operational plans in the manner currently planned.
Among the important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated by the forward-looking statements in this press release are: Gran Tierra's operations are located in South America and unexpected problems can arise due to guerilla activity, strikes, local blockades or protests; technical difficulties and operational difficulties may arise which impact the production, transport or sale of our products; other disruptions to local operations; global health events (including the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic); global and regional changes in the demand, supply, prices, differentials or other market conditions affecting oil and gas, including inflation and changes resulting from a global health crisis, the Russian invasion of Ukraine, or from the imposition or lifting of crude oil production quotas or other actions that might be imposed by OPEC, and other producing countries and the resulting company or third-party actions in response to such changes; changes in commodity prices, including volatility or a decline in these prices relative to historical or future expected levels; the risk that current global economic and credit conditions may impact oil prices and oil consumption more than Gran Tierra currently predicts, which could cause Gran Tierra to further modify its strategy and capital spending program; prices and markets for oil and natural gas are unpredictable and volatile; the accuracy of testing and production results and seismic data, pricing and cost estimates (including with respect to commodity pricing and exchange rates); the effect of hedges; the accuracy of productive capacity of any particular field; geographic, political and weather conditions can impact the production, transport or sale of our products; the ability of Gran Tierra to execute its business plan and realize expected benefits from current initiatives; the risk that unexpected delays and difficulties in developing currently owned properties may occur; the ability to replace reserves and production and develop and manage reserves on an economically viable basis; the risk profile of planned exploration activities; the effects of drilling down-dip; the effects of EOR and stimulation operations; the extent and effect of delivery disruptions, equipment performance and costs; actions by third parties; the timely receipt of regulatory or other required approvals for our operating activities; the failure of exploratory drilling to result in commercial wells; unexpected delays due to the limited availability of drilling equipment and personnel; volatility or declines in the trading price of our common stock or bonds; the risk that Gran Tierra does not receive the anticipated benefits of government programs, including government tax refunds; Gran Tierra's ability comply with financial covenants in its credit agreement and indentures and make borrowings under any credit agreement; capital market disruptions; and the risk factors detailed from time to time in Gran Tierra's periodic reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including, without limitation, under the caption "Risk Factors" in Gran Tierra's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2022 and its other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. These filings are available on the Securities and Exchange Commission website at http://www.sec.gov and SEDAR at www.sedar.com.
The forward-looking statements contained in this press release are based on certain assumptions made by Gran Tierra based on management's experience and other factors believed to be appropriate. Gran Tierra believes these assumptions to be reasonable at this time, but the forward-looking statements are subject to risk and uncertainties, many of which are beyond Gran Tierra's control, which may cause actual results to differ materially from those implied or expressed by the forward-looking statements. In particular, the unprecedented nature of the current economic downturn, pandemic and industry decline may make it particularly difficult to identify risks or predict the degree to which identified risks will impact Gran Tierra's business and financial condition. All forward-looking statements are made as of the date of this press release and the fact that this press release remains available does not constitute a representation by Gran Tierra that Gran Tierra believes these forward-looking statements continue to be true as of any subsequent date. Actual results may vary materially from the expected results expressed in forward-looking statements. Gran Tierra disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as expressly required by applicable law.
Presentation of Oil and Gas Information:
References to a formation where evidence of hydrocarbons has been encountered is not necessarily an indicator that hydrocarbons will be recoverable in commercial quantities or in any estimated volume. Gran Tierra's reported production is a mix of light crude oil and medium and heavy crude oil for which there is not a precise breakdown since the Company's oil sales volumes typically represent blends of more than one type of crude oil. Well test results should be considered as preliminary and not necessarily indicative of long-term performance or of ultimate recovery. Well log interpretations indicating oil and gas accumulations are not necessarily indicative of future production or ultimate recovery. If it is indicated that a pressure transient analysis or well-test interpretation has not been carried out, any data disclosed in that respect should be considered preliminary until such analysis has been completed. References to thickness of "oil pay" or of a formation where evidence of hydrocarbons has been encountered is not necessarily an indicator that hydrocarbons will be recoverable in commercial quantities or in any estimated volume.