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Pioneer Closes Argentine Divestiture
DALLAS, Apr 25, 2006 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Pioneer Natural Resources Company (NYSE:PXD) announced today that the Company has closed the sale of its Argentine operations to Apache Corporation (NYSE:APA) for cash proceeds of approximately $675 million before normal closing adjustments. Pioneer expects to record a nominal after-tax gain associated with the sale which will be reflected in income from discontinued operations during the second quarter of 2006. Pioneer will also recognize Argentina's results for the first quarter of 2006 as discontinued operations.
The Company plans to use the proceeds from this divestiture, coupled with those from the recently announced divestiture of Pioneer's deepwater Gulf of Mexico assets, to:
-- fund a portion of Pioneer's 2006 capital budget, which is focused primarily on North American onshore development activities and lower-risk resource plays,
-- reduce short-term debt and
-- initiate the repurchase of the remaining $359 million of shares authorized under the Company's previously announced $1 billion share repurchase program.
Now that the deepwater Gulf of Mexico and Argentina sales have both been closed, the Company will be in a position to begin repurchasing shares after it releases first quarter 2006 earnings, which is scheduled for May 9. The Company is presently in its regularly scheduled quarterly blackout period, during which the Company is not purchasing its shares in the market.
Production from the Argentine assets was approximately 30,400 barrels of oil equivalent per day during the first quarter of 2006. As of January 1, 2006, the properties' net proved reserves were estimated to be approximately 101 million barrels of oil equivalent.
Pioneer is a large independent oil and gas exploration and production company, headquartered in Dallas, Texas, with operations in the United States, Canada and Africa. For more information, visit Pioneer's website at www.pxd.com.
Except for historical information contained herein, the statements in this News Release are forward-looking statements that are made pursuant to the Safe Harbor Provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements and the business prospects of Pioneer are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties which may cause Pioneer's actual results in future periods to differ materially from the forward-looking statements. These risks and uncertainties include, among other things, volatility of oil and gas prices, government regulation or action, the costs and results of drilling and operations, Pioneer's ability to implement its business plans (including its plans to repurchase stock), access to and cost of capital and uncertainties about estimates of reserves. These and other risks are described in Pioneer's 10-K and 10-Q Reports and other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
SOURCE: Pioneer Natural Resources Company
Pioneer Natural Resources Company, Dallas Investors: Frank Hopkins, 972-444-9001 or Media and Public Affairs: Susan Spratlen, 972-444-9001
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