Bonavista Energy Trust

Bonavista Energy Trust

October 17, 2005 09:00 ET

Bonavista Energy Trust Announces Increase to the 2005 Capital Program and a 20% Increase in Monthly Distributions to CDN $0.33 per Trust Unit

CALGARY, ALBERTA--(CCNMatthews - Oct. 17, 2005) - Bonavista Energy Trust (TSX:BNP.UN) ("Bonavista") is pleased to announce today that it's Board of Directors has approved an increase in Bonavista's 2005 capital program from $230 million to $260 million and also has approved a 20% increase in monthly distributions to unitholders from $0.275 per trust unit to $0.33 per trust unit. The $260 million expanded capital program will result in an increase in Bonavista's drilling activity from 300 wells to 325 wells as well as an increase in the acquisition portion of the budget from $50 million to $60 million. The increase in the drilling activity will allow Bonavista to continue the momentum from the success of the third quarter drilling program and to accelerate a portion of its 2006 winter program into the fourth quarter of 2005.

Bonavista's Board of Directors establishes and announces it's distribution policy quarterly, and for the fourth quarter of 2005 monthly distributions will be $0.33 per trust unit. This monthly distribution is comprised of a regular base distribution which has been increased from the previous $0.25 per trust unit to $0.28 per trust unit, plus a supplementary distribution of $0.05 per trust unit due to the significant strength in commodity prices currently being realized. The base distribution rate assumes realized commodity prices of $8.00 CDN per gj at AECO for natural gas and $58.00 CDN per barrel at Edmonton for light crude (this equates to approximately $7.90 US per mmbtu NYMEX natural gas and $50.00 US per barrel WTI crude oil). Our supplementary distribution is anticipated to be maintained while commodity prices remain strong. Consequently, Bonavista has declared a distribution of $0.33 per trust unit in respect of October production, to be paid on November 15, 2005 for unitholders of record on October 31, 2005. The ex-distribution date is October 27, 2005. The combined regular base and supplementary cash distribution incorporates the withholding of sufficient cash flow to be used for the financing of capital expenditures in order to maintain or modestly grow the current production base and provide sustainable distributions in the long-term. Based upon the current strong commodity price environment, it is anticipated that this level of combined cash distributions will be maintained throughout the fourth quarter of 2005. In the event that a further cash surplus develops during the fourth quarter, resulting from either higher commodity prices or stronger operational results, this surplus may be used to increase distributions, reduce debt, and/or increase the capital expenditure program.

Ex-Distribution Distribution Distribution
Record Date Date Date per Unit
October 31, October 27, November 15,
2005 2005 2005 $0.33
November 30, November 28, December 15,
2005 2005 2005 $0.33 (1)
December 31, December 28, January 16,
2005 2005 2006 $0.33 (1)

(1) This reflects an anticipated combined regular base and supplementary
distribution rate based on Bonavista's current projected commodity
prices, commodity hedge positions and production volumes.
Distributions are subject to change should there be a material
change in expected cash flow for the respective periods.

Currently, Bonavista has 79.7 million Trust Units and 14.1 million Exchangeable Shares. The Exchangeable Shares are convertible into 18.9 million Trust Units based on the current exchange ratio, which is adjusted monthly to reflect the distribution paid on the Trust Units. Cash distributions are not paid on the Exchangeable Shares nor are the Exchangeable Shares publicly traded on the open market.

Bonavista Energy Trust is focused on a balanced commodity approach and is committed to maintaining its emphasis on operating high quality oil and natural gas properties, delivering consistent distributions to unitholders and ensuring financial strength and sustainability.

Forward Looking Statements

Corporate information provided herein contains forward-looking information. The reader is cautioned that assumptions used in the preparation of such information, particularly those pertaining to cash distributions, production volumes, commodity prices, operating costs and drilling results, which are considered reasonable by Bonavista at the time of preparation, may be proven to be incorrect. Actual results achieved during the forecast period will vary from the information provided herein and the variations may be material. There is no representation by Bonavista that actual results achieved during the forecast period will be the same in whole or in part as those forecast.

Contact Information

  • Bonavista Energy Trust
    Keith A. MacPhail
    President & CEO
    (403) 213-4300
    Ronald J. Poelzer
    Executive Vice President & CFO
    (403) 213-4300
    Greg R. Warner
    Vice President, Finance
    (403) 213-4300
    Bonavista Energy Trust
    700, 311 - 6th Avenue SW
    Calgary, AB T2P 3H2