Wentworth, the independent, Tanzania -focused natural gas production company, is pleased to announce an operational update ahead of its Annual General Meeting ("AGM") to be held today.
As previously announced and in light of the current COVID-19 restrictions, the AGM will be run as a closed meeting and no shareholder, proxy or corporate representative should seek to attend the AGM in person. The attendance in person by shareholders or others will not be permitted, except for the limited number of persons specifically designated by the Company to form a quorum for the meeting.
Due to these restrictions and in order to provide shareholders with enhanced access to management and to replicate a physical AGM as far as practicable, the Company is using the Investor Meet Company platform. This platform will allow shareholders the ability to follow proceedings of the AGM, hear from the Company via a live presentation and participate in a Q&A session following the presentation. The Company will also provide an online recording, available on the Investor Meet Company platform after the meeting.
2021 Operations and Outlook
· Strong in-country natural gas demand in H1 2021 enabling an increase in annual average production guidance for 2021 to 70-80 MMscf/day (gross) from 65-75 MMscf/day (gross)
· Wentworth and Mnazi Bay JV Partners supply 50% of natural gas production in Tanzania
· Average daily production year to date of 80.3 MMscf/day (gross), compared with 58.1 MMscf/day (gross) during the same period in 2020
o Field production record for monthly average daily production of 101.85 MMscf/day (gross) in March 2021
o Field production record for daily production rate of 110.65 MMscf/day (gross)
· The Mnazi Bay JV Partners have continued to deliver on the 2021 work programme, which is focused on ensuring reliability of supply. This work programme includes:
o Maintenance on MS-1X well including casing and flowline valve replacement
o Refurbishment of the MB-1 well site superstructure
o Calibration of flowmeters at Gas Processing Facility
o Upgrade to the field's Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition system (SCADA)
o Pre-Front End Engineering and Design (FEED) Study on compression
· The health and safety of our employees remains paramount and robust precautionary measures remain in effect; there have been no reported cases of COVID-19 at Mnazi Bay to date. Operations remain uninterrupted.
· Declared a final dividend in respect of FY 2020 of 1.0 pence per share ( $2.6 million ); a total dividend distribution in respect of 2020 of $3.8 million ( 1.5 pence per share) representing an increase of 27% from 2019 ( $3.0 million ) and a yield of approximately 6.7% (calculated on an annualised basis)
· Debt free with cash on hand of $21.5 million as of 31 May 2021
· TPDC remains fully current with all invoices for gas sales
· TANESCO outstanding receivable of $1.7 million (net to WEN); revised GSA terms now agreed and awaiting TANESCO Board approval clearing the way for payments of arrears to commence
· Ongoing commitment to a progressive capital returns policy
· Continued focus on growth within Tanzania , capitalising on operational track record
· Continued process of Board refreshment with the forthcoming appointment of an independent non-executive director with regional expertise. A further announcement will be made in due course
· The power access gap in Tanzania is growing despite domestic energy supply increasing; transformational growth is needed in domestic energy supply to deliver the Government's target of universal access by 2030 through low-cost, low carbon solutions that will secure a just transition for Tanzania in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals
· Natural gas will play a critical role in meeting this target to support cheaper and more reliable electricity as well as facilitating an enabling environment to supplement carbon-free renewable energy systems, such as hydro and solar and replacing carbon-intensive off-grid fuel sources such as HFO and diesel
· Ongoing ESG strategy remains a priority following the publication of Wentworth's inaugural Sustainability Report for 2020; it addresses how Wentworth proactively manages its impacts by upholding relevant international standards and adopting a responsible approach to doing business in Tanzania
· Announced membership of the United Nations (" UN") Global Compact , underlining our commitment to operating responsibly in line with the UN's Ten Principles on human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption and to take strategic action to support the UN's Sustainable Development Goals
· Developing a robust climate strategy is a focus for 2021. With Scope 1 and 2 emissions at 0.22kg CO2e/Mcf (1.3kg CO2e/boe), Wentworth's emissions profile is one of the lowest in the sector
Katherine Roe , CEO, commented:
"Building on from the successes of last year despite the challenging macroeconomic environment, the first half of 2021 has demonstrated the ongoing resilience and the strength of the fundamentals of our business.
We are delighted to be revising our 2021 production guidance upwards following higher than expected demand in H1 of this year alongside seeing a new record for monthly average daily production of 101.85 MMscf in March. This increased demand is in part due to a recovery in industrial demand from the impacts of COVID-19 and in part due to lower rainfall in the catchment areas of the hydroelectric dams. Our gas provides 50% of Tanzanian natural gas power generation demonstrating our critical role in facilitating sustainable energy growth in the country today and going forward.
The Board and I are delighted to be in the final stages of appointing a new independent non-executive director with regional expertise to demonstrate our ongoing commitment to and investment in Tanzania . It's an exciting time for the country as it looks to accelerate its growth following the global pandemic. We are committed to being a valuable partner in the next phase of its growth story."