Occidental Petroleum Corporation (NYSE:OXY) Q4 2015 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript
Feb 04, 2016 • 10:00 am ET
Good morning and welcome to the Occidental Petroleum Corporation fourth-quarter 2015 earnings conference call. [Operator Instructions] I would now like to turn the conference over to Chris Degner, Senior Director of Investor Relations. Please go ahead, sir.
Thank you, Carrie. Good morning, everyone and thank you for participating in Occidental Petroleum's fourth-quarter 2015 conference call. On the call with us today are Steve Chazen, OXY's President and CEO; Vicki Hollub, President and Chief Operating Officer; Jody Elliott, President of OXY Domestic Oil and Gas; Sandy Lowe, President of OXY Oil and Gas International; and Chris Stavros, Chief Financial Officer. In just a moment, I will turn the call over to Vicki Hollub. As a reminder, today's conference call contains certain projections and other forward-looking statements within the meaning of the federal securities laws.
These statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in these statements. Additional information on factors that could cause results to differ is available on the Company's most recent Form 10-K. Our fourth-quarter 2015 earnings press release, the investor relations supplemental schedules, our non-GAAP to GAAP reconciliations and the conference call presentation slides can be downloaded off of our website at www.OXY.com.
I will now turn the call over to Vicki Hollub. Vicki, please go ahead.
Thank you, Chris, and good morning, everyone. Despite sharp declines in product prices, we had a strong year of production growth, particularly in Permian Resources and we made big strides in lowering our cost structure, as well as executing our strategic review. I'd like to share highlights of our 2015 achievements. First, Permian Resources growth exceeded our expectations as we reached our 2016 growth target of 120,000 BOE per day. This was a year ahead of our original plan.
We increased production by 35,000 BOE per day for a year-over-year growth rate of 47%. Al Hosn reached full production capacity and delivered an average of 35,000 BOE per day of production last year. In total, we grew our production by 81,000 BOE per day, which was approximately 14% higher than 2014. We reduced our cash operating costs by 14%, achieved SG&A savings of 16% and cut our average drilling and completion costs in Permian Resources by 33%. As a part of our strategic review that we launched at the end of 2013, we sold our Williston Basin properties and made significant progress in our effort to exit non-core areas in the Middle East, including Iraq and Yemen, while also reducing our exposure in Bahrain.
This will lead to lower capital spending in the region. Construction of the OxyChem ethylene cracker joint venture is on schedule and on budget for startup in early 2017. We reached a settlement with the Republic of Ecuador for approximately $1 billion, of which we've collected $300 million and expect to receive the remaining proceeds in the coming months. And we exited 2015 with $4.4 billion of cash on our balance sheet. Now I'd like to