TORONTO, Oct. 1, 2013 /CNW/ - Pacific Rubiales Energy Corp. (TSX: PRE; BVC: PREC; BOVESPA: PREB) is pleased to announce that it has been granted a patent for its proprietary Synchronized Thermal Additional Recovery ("STAR") enhanced oil recovery technology by the Colombian patent authority, the Superintendencia de Industria y Comercio ("SIC").
The patent award by the SIC provides the Company with intellectual property rights to the STAR technology in Colombia for an exclusive 20 year period from the filing date of April 1, 2011, to April 1, 2031. The patent specifically recognizes: 1) the synchronized system of oil production using the combustion process, employing in-situ measurement, monitoring and control of operational conditions in real time and distance, and 2) the use of a numerical model intelligent well/subsurface system to monitor and control the progress of the combustion front and fluids; critical to successful application of STAR.
Ronald Pantin, Chief Executive Officer of the Company, commented:
"This patent represents a strong endorsement and provides additional credibility to STAR by recognizing the importance of this technology and the value we expect it to bring to both Pacific Rubiales shareholders and to Colombia.
"Recently we announced that early progress in our Quifa SW field STAR pilot project had indicated that the technology had already resulted in a doubling of the recovery factor, in one of the largest producing heavy oil fields in Colombia. On the back of the independent certification of these results by three independent engineering firms, the Company is progressing with plans to expand the STAR pilot to first commercial application in Quifa SW in 2014.
"Pacific Rubiales is a demonstrated first mover and leader in heavy oil exploration and production in Colombia. We believe that the success of STAR has important implications beyond the Quifa SW field because more than 75% of Colombia's total oil production growth since 2004 has come from heavy oil, with the majority of that coming from the Company operated Rubiales and Quifa fields, currently producing under primary recovery flow methods only.
"With very large volumes of Original Oil in Place in a number of discovered fields, heavy oil production is as much the future of the Colombian oil industry, as it is the future of Pacific Rubiales. The granting of this patent recognizes the commercial value and future of STAR, and the Company's pioneering role in its development."
Superintendencia de Industria y Comercio (SIC) is a competitiveness regulatory agency of the Government of Colombia in charge of regulating fair business practices, promoting competitiveness and acting as the Colombian patent and registration office.
Pacific Rubiales, a Canadian company and producer of natural gas and crude oil, owns 100% of Meta Petroleum Corp., which operates the Rubiales, Piriri and Quifa heavy oil fields in the Llanos Basin, and 100% of Pacific Stratus Energy Colombia Corp., which operates the La Creciente natural gas field in the northwestern area of Colombia. Pacific Rubiales has also acquired 100% of PetroMagdalena Energy Corp., which owns light oil assets in Colombia, and 100% of C&C Energia Ltd., which owns light oil assets in the Llanos Basin. In addition, the Company has a diversified portfolio of assets beyond Colombia, which includes producing and exploration assets in Peru, Guatemala, Brazil, Guyana and Papua New Guinea.
The Company's common shares trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange and La Bolsa de Valores de Colombia and as Brazilian Depositary Receipts on Brazil's Bolsa de Valores Mercadorias e Futuros under the ticker symbols PRE, PREC, and PREB, respectively.
Cautionary Note Concerning Forward-Looking Statements
This news release contains forward-looking statements. All statements, other than statements of historical fact, that address activities, events or developments that the Company believes, expects or anticipates will or may occur in the future (including, without limitation, statements regarding estimates and/or assumptions in respect of production, revenue, cash flow and costs, reserve and resource estimates, potential resources and reserves and the Company's exploration and development plans and objectives) are forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements reflect the current expectations or beliefs of the Company based on information currently available to the Company. Forward-looking statements are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties that may cause the actual results of the Company to differ materially from those discussed in the forward-looking statements, and even if such actual results are realized or substantially realized, there can be no assurance that they will have the expected consequences to, or effects on, the Company. Factors that could cause actual results or events to differ materially from current expectations include, among other things: uncertainty of estimates of capital and operating costs, production estimates and estimated economic return; the possibility that actual circumstances will differ from the estimates and assumptions; failure to establish estimated resources or reserves; fluctuations in petroleum prices and currency exchange rates; inflation; changes in equity markets; political developments in Colombia, Guatemala, Peru, Brazil, Papua New Guinea and Guyana; changes to regulations affecting the Company's activities; uncertainties relating to the availability and costs of financing needed in the future; the uncertainties involved in interpreting drilling results and other geological data; and the other risks disclosed under the heading "Risk Factors" and elsewhere in the Company's annual information form dated March 13, 2013 filed on SEDAR at www.sedar.com. Any forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date on which it is made and, except as may be required by applicable securities laws, the Company disclaims any intent or obligation to update any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or results or otherwise. Although the Company believes that the assumptions inherent in the forward-looking statements are reasonable, forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and accordingly undue reliance should not be put on such statements due to the inherent uncertainty therein.
In addition, reported production levels may not be reflective of sustainable production rates and future production rates may differ materially from the production rates reflected in this news release due to, among other factors, difficulties or interruptions encountered during the production of hydrocarbons.
This news release was prepared in the English language and subsequently translated into Spanish and Portuguese. In the case of any differences between the English version and its translated counterparts, the English document should be treated as the governing version.
SOURCE Pacific Rubiales Energy Corp.
Christopher (Chris) LeGallais
Sr. Vice President, Investor Relations
+1 (647) 295-3700
Sr. Manager, Investor Relations
+57 (1) 511-2298
Manager, Investor Relations
+1 (416) 362-7735