Global upstream outlays rose in 2003, analysts say

Worldwide upstream spending for oil and natural gas increased by 9% to $161 billion in 2003, rebounding from a 4.4% decline the previous year, according to the latest annual global review of upstream performance by John S. Herold Inc. and Harrison Lovegrove & Co. Ltd.As a result of higher oil and gas prices, the analysts said, "Cash flow was at a 5-year high in every region in 2003. Cash flow exceeded spending in five out of six regions. The lone exception was Africa and the Middle East, where the 36% year-over-year increase in spending led to a $3 billion cash deficit."In Canada, they said, costs incurred have exceeded cash flow by nearly 40% over the last 5 years as a result of "massive...

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