Spain's Repsol raises Q1 crude oil throughput by 6% on year to 11.6 mil mtoe

Barcelona (Platts)--4 May 2018 542 am EDT/942 GMT

Spanish integrated oil company Repsol said Friday that it upped crude throughput at its refineries by 6% year on year in the first quarter of 2018 to 11.6 million mt of oil equivalent (945,000 b/d of oil equivalent).

* Utilization, conversion rates increase from Q1 2017

* Energy costs, gasoline differential weigh on margins

* Upstream volume boosted by Libya, several start-ups

But throughput fell from 12.3 million mtoe processed in Q4 2017, amid maintenance including a major turnaround that spanned all of February and March at the 150,000 b/d Puertollano refinery.

The company's throughput in Europe for the first quarter was 10.2 million mtoe, up 6% year on year, while throughput in Peru was 1.3 million mtoe, down 0.2% year on year, it reported.

Repsol operates five Spanish refineries at Bilbao, Cartagena, Tarragona, Puertollano and Corunna, and has a controlling stake in the La Pampilla refinery in Peru, with total net capacity of around 980,000 b/d.

The utilization rate of the company's five Spanish refineries was 92.5% in the period, up 6% year on year, but down from a rate of 97.1% achieved in the fourth quarter.

Likewise, the conversion rate in the first quarter rose 7% year on year to 104.4%, but down from a rate of 113.1% in Q4 last year.

The company's benchmark Spanish refining margin averaged $6.60/b in Q1, down 7% year on year and down 30 cents/b from Q4 2017.

"A widening of the differentials for middle distillates was not enough to compensate increased energy costs and the tightening of gasoline differentials (in the period)," Repsol said.

The company nonetheless reported that its refined product sales increased by 0.3% year on year to 12.1 million mt in the first quarter although petrochemical sales fell 3% year on year to 688,000 mt, weighed by maintenance at its Tarragona, Spain, and Sines, Portugal plants while earnings from the business unit were impacted by lower market prices for styrene and butadiene.

LPG sales totaled 437,000 mt, up 0.3% from the year-ago quarter amid favorable climatic conditions, Repsol said.

Natural gas sales volume in the North American market fell 8% year on year to 143 trillion Btu in the first quarter, the company added.

The company's average realized price of crude oil was $60.90/b in Q1, up 23% year on year, while the average realized gas price rose 13% year on year to $3.50 per 1,000 standard cubic feet.

In the upstream business, the company confirmed a 5% year-on-year increase in production to 727,000 boe/d, lifted by a production increase in Libya, start-ups in Juniper in Trinidad and Tobago, Shaw and Cayley in the UK, Reggane in Algeria and Malaysia's Kinabalu, as well as the purchase of the Visund field in Norway. These were offset partly by sales of the SK field in Russia and Ogan Komering in Indonesia.

Liquids production increased 4% year on year to a 269,000 b/d in Q1, while gas production was 2.6 Bcf/d, up 5% year on year.

--Gianluca Baratti,

--Edited by Irene Tang,

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