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Pacific Rubiales Surges on Output Growth Prospects

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Aug. 9 (Bloomberg) -- Pacific Rubiales Energy Corp. rose the most in more than five months as the Bogota-based oil producer forecast output at Colombia’s largest field will rise “very quickly” after being granted a water injection license.

Shares surged 6 percent to 40,700 pesos in Bogota, the steepest jump since Feb. 23. State-controlled Ecopetrol SA, which has a stake in the field, rose 2.3 percent to 5,280 pesos.

Production from the Rubiales field in eastern Colombia will climb to 190,000 barrels a day at year-end and 210,000 barrels a day next year from about 172,000 barrels a day now, Chief Executive Officer Ronald Pantin said on a conference call today with analysts. The environmental license probably will enable the company to achieve its annual growth guidance, according to Banco Itau BBA SA analyst Paula Kovarsky.

“This is an important milestone for the company, enabling it to increase its oil production,” Kovarsky wrote in a research report.

Colombian regulators probably will step up the pace of awarding licenses, Pantin said. Delays in granting permits to expand oil fields and exploration, combined with guerrilla attacks on infrastructure, have slowed production this year, said analyst Mauricio Hernandez at Corredores Asociados SA.

Colombian output slid to 929,200 barrels a day in July from 934,000 barrels a day in June, according to the government. Colombia, which targets 1 million barrels a day this year, is South America’s third-largest crude supplier after Venezuela and Brazil.

Pacific Rubiales had second-quarter profit of $224 million. Adjusted earnings from operations were $187 million, according to a statement distributed after the close of trading yesterday. Two analysts surveyed by Bloomberg had an average forecast of $185.5 million for net income.

To contact the reporter on this story: Heather Walsh in Bogota at hlwalsh@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Attwood at jattwood3@bloomberg.net