Total\'s refineries of Dunkirk, northern France
Oil giant Total confirmed Monday it was targeting production of three million barrels per day in 2017 and said it will start tapering investments next year after a period of intensive exploration.
The French energy major said its goal was 2.6 million barrels of oil equivalent per day in 2015 and around three million barrels per day in 2017, up from 2.3 million barrels per day last year.
The group\'s targets have gotten a boost from a series of deposits that have recently come online, or will soon do so, including the Kachagan oil field in Kazakhstan, which began production this month.
Total said it would begin cutting investments in 2014 to reach a level of $24 billion to $25 billion by a horizon of 2015-2017, down from $28 billion to $29 billion this year.
\"We\'re arriving at the end of a phase of intensive investments,\" said chief financial officer Patrick de la Chevardiere.
The new production and lower investment cost will increase the group\'s net cash flow to $15 billion before dividend payments in 2017, he told journalists at a Total investors\' day in London.
He said planned asset sales -- announced last year with a target range of $15 billion to $20 billion -- would be \"closer to 20 billion than to 15\".
Total also said it plans to launch exploratory drilling at more than 15 wells by the end of next year, including in the Gulf of Mexico, Iraq, Brazil and Angola.