* Investment programme raised to $20 bln from $16 bln
* Hydrocarbon production seen up 3 pct vs 1.5-2 pct earlier
(Adds detail, quotes)
MOSCOW, April 23 Russia's No.2 crude producer
Lukoil has increased its 2013 investment programme and
hydrocarbon production forecast following the acquisition of
upstream assets, Russian media quoted its chief executive as
saying on Tuesday.
Vagit Alekperov said planned investment has been increased
to $20 billion from $16 billion while hydrocarbon production is
seen rising 3 percent versus an earlier forecast of 1.5-2
percent, Russian newswires reported.
In 2012, Lukoil invested $12 billion.
Lukoil has been struggling to stabilise production in Russia
and has been aggressively acquiring upstream assets abroad,
including Iraq's huge West Qurna-2 oilfield.
Earlier this month, Lukoil also acquired small Russian
producer Samara-Nafta, which is currently producing 50,000
barrels of oil equivalent per day, for $2.05 billion.
Alekperov said the deal was expected to close on April 26.
"We've made a big acquisition, approved a three-year
programme, and, under any oil prices, we will not do two things,
which is to lower dividends for our shareholders and (lower)
investment programme," Interfax quoted Alekperov as saying.
On Monday, Lukoil's board recommended to pay 90 roubles per
share in 2012 dividend, up from 75 roubles a year earlier.
Lukoil's domestic oil production fell in 2010-2012, mainly
due to depletion of fields in West Siberia as well as
lower-than-expected production potential of a field in Russia's
northern Timan-Pechora region.
Last year, its hydrocarbon production stood at 2.17 million
barrels of oil equivalent per day, up 0.5 percent due mainly to
a rise in natural gas output.
(Reporting by Vladimir Soldatkin; editing by Maria Kiselyova
and Jason Neely)