PANGILINAN-LED PXP Energy Corp. said on Thursday that it would continue to coordinate with the government to resume exploration activities at petroleum blocks in the West Philippine Sea.

“Each of PXP Energy Corp. and Forum Energy Ltd. will continue to coordinate with the government on the possible resumption of activities in both SC (service contract) 72 and SC 75, and will pursue exploration work in SC 40,” the company said in a stock exchange disclosure.

The Recto Bank concession of SC 72 is located in the West Philippine Sea, west of Palawan Island and southwest of the Shell-operated Malampaya Gas Field.

PXP has a total economic interest of 54.36% in SC 72, while Forum GSEC 101 Limited holds a 70% participating interest. Forum GSEC 101 is a subsidiary of Forum Energy Limited, in which PXP holds a direct and indirect interest of 79.13%.

Meanwhile, PXP holds a 50% interest in SC 75, located in northwest Palawan.

In April 2022, the Department of Energy directed the companies to suspend their respective exploration activities “until such time that the Security, Justice, and Peace Coordinating Cluster has issued the necessary clearance to proceed.”

While waiting for the government’s decision, the company said that it would “assess and study other projects in the Philippines.” 

For 2023, PXP reported that its attributable net loss widened to P97.4 million from P36.12 million in the previous year amid lower revenues.

This came from the impairment charges in SC 74, or the Linapacan block in northwest Palawan.

Core net loss grew almost twice last year to P42.5 billion from P22 million due to lower margins from its Galoc oil field operations, increase in overhead, and higher interest expense.

The company’s consolidated petroleum revenues went down by 14.7% to P63.2 million, dragged by lower oil output and prices.

PXP recorded an output of 475,183 barrels of oil at $80.5 per barrel from its Galoc oil field operations, both lower than the 479,955 barrels at $94.5 per barrel.

Consolidated costs and expenses went up slightly to P102.6 million driven by a slight improvement in petroleum products costs which reached P39.9 million.

Shares of the company declined by eight centavos or 2.23% to close at P3.50 each. — Sheldeen Joy Talavera