Australia’s Woodside Petroleum was the latest victim of cyclonic weather in the oil and gas market, listing a 20.1% drop in revenue for the March quarter on 16 April.
Revenue fell to USD1.4 billion for the quarter and was down 15.9% from the same period last year.
Last August, the LNG major recorded a USD1.105 billion profit for the first half of 2014 – up 24% for the same period in 2013.
Woodside blamed its lower production levels on the weather.
“During the cyclone, a submersible drilling rig under contract to another party drifted near Pluto flow lines and resulted in a six-day precautionary production shut-in,” the company reported.
Falling sales revenue reflected lower oil and condensate volumes as well as lower oil prices, but was partially offset by higher LNG sales, said the company.
Crude oil price has fallen 60% since mid-June and last traded at USD58.78/barrel.
“It is impossible to predict just how long this lower oil price environment will last,” chair Michael Chaney told the annual general meeting (AGM) on 16 April. “But the company is planning on the basis that it could be several years.”
In 2014, Woodside delivered a record underlying profit of USD2.4 billion and record production of 95 million barrels of oil equivalent.
“We’ve entered this downturn ahead of the curve and we are determined to stay there,” CEO Peter Coleman told the AGM.
Meanwhile, a spokesperson for the Australian Petroleum and Energy Association told IHS Maritime a major price correction of the kind now being experienced is “a sharp reminder to big, long-established businesses, as well as aspiring new entrants, that the need to keep a tight hold on costs, and other fundamental operating issues, is ever-present”.