Marathon Oil detailed its diminished drilling strategy on Thursday, with most resources focused on Eagle Ford shale.
The Houston-based company announced a 2016 capital program of $1.4 billion dollars, down more than 50 percent from 2015 and more than 75 percent below 2014.
Approximately $600 million in capital spending is set aside for Eagle Ford, of which $520 million is for drilling and completions. The 2016 drilling program will continue focusing on co-development of the Upper and Lower Eagle Ford horizons, as well as the Austin Chalk .
However, Marathon said its Eagle Ford rig count will be reduced to five in the first quarter. In 2015, the company operated an average of 11 rigs in Eagle Ford shale.
Marathon will continue to work in Oklahoma Resource Basins, allocating $204 million for drilling in the Sooner State. Bakken shale projects will receive slightly less, with a $193 million budget.
“Through this cycle of sustained low oil prices and market volatility, Marathon Oil will continue to focus on balance sheet protection and operational flexibility,” President and CEO Lee Tillman said.
Several international projects will be pursued by the company. Marathon expects to spend $41 million sustaining Canadian oil sands capital projects. The Equatorial Guinea project, expected to start producing mid-2016, will be allocated $76 million. Kurdistan assets will get $72 million, as well.
Non-core assets are expected to be sold off in order to raise funds. The company plans for up to $1 billion in assets sales this year.