UPDATE 3-Canadian Natural Resources targets more spending cuts

Thu Mar 3, 2016 2:35pm EST
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* Lowers 2016 capex forecast to C$3.5-C$3.9 billion

* Capex forecast to be C$2.5-C2.6 bln in 2017, 2018

* Q4 earnings pre share C$0.12 vs C$0.09 forecast

* President says no plans for job losses (Adds president's comments on jobs, capex)

By Matt Scuffham

CALGARY, Alberta, March 3 (Reuters) - Canadian Natural Resources Ltd slashed its capital expenditure plan for 2016 and targeted further cuts in 2017 and 2018 in response to the slump in oil prices which has hit its profits.

Canada's second-biggest oil and gas producer reported an 89 percent fall in quarterly profit and lowered its estimated 2016 capital spending to between C$3.5 billion ($2.6 billion) and C$3.9 billion, from C$4.5 billion to C$5 billion previously.

"In 2017, we're looking to spend around C$2.5 to C$2.6 billion dollars. Getting to 2018, we expect to spend about the same. Those are the numbers that keep our production flat. We're assuming we have a low oil price throughout that time," President Steve Laut told analysts on a conference call.

Capital required to expand the company's Horizon oil sands project in Alberta will drop by C$1 billion next year, Laut said.   Continued...