After outpacing its previous production goals, Continental Resources Inc. has set its expectations higher, the Oklahoma City energy company said Monday.
The company said it plans to triple its production and proved reserves over the next five years.
Much of the growth is expected in North Dakota's Bakken formation.
“Our legacy assets in the largest oil field found in over 40 years, the Bakken, provide a large amount of comfort in the reliability of our new five-year plan,” said Harold Hamm, Continental's chairman and CEO.
“In addition, those assets are supplemented by a new and expanded view of the Anadarko Woodford (in Western Oklahoma), resulting in a new oil province with multiple oil plays.”
The company said it expects to produce 36 million barrels of oil equivalent in 2012 and increase that production level to 108 million barrels in 2017.
Continental's previous goal was to triple its 2009 production of 13.6 million barrels by the end of 2014.
Tulsa money manager Jake Dollarhide said the oil company has benefited from relatively strong oil prices while low natural gas prices have forced many production companies to switch their drilling programs to oil from natural gas in recent years.
“Being heavy on oil is not an accident. It was a clear-cut strategic operating decision for Continental to be heavier in oil than most of its peers,” said Dollarhide, CEO of Longbow Asset Management Co.
“At a time when many of its peers who are heavier in natural gas are cutting their production outlooks and scrambling because of low natural gas prices and debt payments, Continental is able to come out with a strong report.”