Chevron produces and explores for crude oil and natural gas around the world. In 2014, our worldwide net oil-equivalent production averaged 2.571 million barrels per day, with about 26 percent of the production coming from the United States and the rest from more than 20 other countries.
Continued development of our existing production facilities is critical to maintaining the company's oil and natural gas production. By focusing on operational processes, we had reduced the annual rate of production decline in our existing operations to less than 3 percent by year-end 2014. The effective use of our own technology has helped improve long-term field performance.
Production growth is dependent on bringing resources and proved reserves into production through major capital projects. Chevron has an extensive lineup of major capital projects under way, from conventional oil and natural gas to deepwater, liquefied natural gas (LNG) and heavy oil developments.
Exploration also is key to future growth. The company's focus areas for exploration in 2014 were the deepwater regions of West Africa, the deepwater U.S. Gulf of Mexico, offshore northwest Australia, and in several shale and tight resource plays in North America. Exploration activity, including drilling and seismic activities, was ongoing or being planned in promising fields in Argentina, Canada, China, Indonesia, Liberia, Morocco, Norway, the Partitioned Zone between Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, Thailand, and offshore the United Kingdom.
Chevron is developing natural gas from shale formations in Pennsylvania, Ohio and Michigan in the United States as well as in newly acquired positions in a variety of locations worldwide. Areas of particular focus are the liquids-rich shale formations in the Permian Basin in the United States, the Vaca Muerta Shale in Argentina and the Duvernay Shale in Canada.
Partnering for Growth in the Caspian
Chevron is the largest private producer of oil in Kazakhstan, and we're involved in two of the country's largest projects, Tengiz and Karachaganak. Since 1993, Chevron has led the Tengizchevroil joint venture in the development of the giant Tengiz and adjacent Korolev fields. Final investment decisions for both the Future Growth Project and the Wellhead Pressure Management Project are anticipated in the second half of 2015. Chevron also holds a stake in the Karachaganak Field, Kazakhstan's second-largest producing petroleum reserve.
In Azerbaijan, Chevron has an interest in the Azerbaijan International Operating Company, which produces and develops offshore oil reserves in the Caspian Sea from the Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli (ACG) project. The ACG's Chirag Oil Project began production in 2014.
Investing in the Asia-Pacific Region
As the largest resource holder and producer among international oil companies in the Asia-Pacific region, Chevron is investing in a portfolio of resources to meet the growing energy demand there.
In Australia, the company is leading the development of the Gorgon and Wheatstone LNG and domestic gas projects. Gorgon is Australia's largest single-resource project and has an expected economic life of more than 40 years after startup of the first processing unit, which is scheduled for the third quarter of 2015. Construction continues on the Wheatstone Project, with startup of the first processing unit expected in late 2016. Chevron is a founding partner in the North West Shelf Venture, which supplies natural gas for Western Australia and LNG for customers in the Asia-Pacific region. We also have operated the country's largest oil field, on Barrow Island, for 50 years. Chevron continues to make significant investments in exploration offshore northwest Australia and announced five natural gas discoveries in 2014.
In Thailand, Chevron is the leading natural gas and oil producer. We operate more than 250 platforms in the Gulf of Thailand, and we supply Thailand with approximately one-third of the country's gas demand. Front-end engineering and design work continued at the Ubon Project in 2014.
Elsewhere in the region, Chevron is the top oil producer in Indonesia, where we operate one of the world's largest steamflood developments, at the Duri Field on Sumatra. In China, we operate the Chuandongbei natural gas development. Chuandongbei's first processing unit is expected to begin production in 2015. And in Bangladesh, we supply nearly half of the country's natural gas consumption.
Growing With Africa and Latin America
We are applying our expertise and advanced technology to meet the energy needs of growing African and Latin American economies. Our operations include oil and natural gas, LNG, gas-to-liquids, and deepwater and heavy oil exploration and production.
Chevron ranks among the top petroleum producers in Angola. We invest in major energy projects intended to dramatically increase oil production and conserve natural gas for use in Angola. We are working with our partners on a major development program to significantly increase production from the Block 0 concession, offshore Cabinda Province. Construction on the second stage of the Mafumeira Field development continues through 2015, and first production is planned for 2016. The Angola LNG project produced its first shipment of LNG in 2013.In April 2014, the Angola LNG plant experienced a failure in the flare blowdown piping system, resulting in an extended plant shutdown. After completion of modifications and repairs, the plant will be restarted and LNG production is expected to resume in late 2015.
Chevron is the third-largest oil producer in Nigeria and one of the largest investors in the country. We have extensive interests in deepwater Nigeria, including the Agbami Field, one of Nigeria's largest deepwater discoveries. Front-end engineering and design work for the Agbami 3 project began in 2014 as the Usan project continued to ramp up production. Production began at the Escravos gas-to-liquids facility in mid-2014.
In Latin America, Chevron has operations or interests in six countries. In Brazil, production ramp-up started at Papa-Terra in 2013 and is expected to continue through 2017.
Chevron participates in onshore and offshore production projects in Venezuela. The onshore Petropiar project upgrades extra-heavy crude oil to lighter, higher-value synthetic crude oil. In Colombia, Chevron produces enough natural gas to meet about half of the nation's demand.
Maximizing Mature Resources and Creating New Opportunities
Chevron uses the latest technology to maintain strong production in mature fields while discovering and developing new resources. We are one of the largest producers of liquids in the United States, with major producing operations in California, the Gulf of Mexico, the Appalachian Basin, Texas, New Mexico and the Rocky Mountains.
We continue to pursue opportunities in unconventional oil and gas resources. Our ongoing focus is on developing tight oil and liquids-rich shale and dry gas production. We also focus on the safe, efficient production of those resources. Dry gas is natural gas that is free of liquid hydrocarbons.
We are a major producer of crude oil and natural gas on the Gulf of Mexico shelf and in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico. Our projects include the Blind Faith, Tahiti, Jack/St. Malo and Big Foot deepwater developments. The Jack/St. Malo project began production in December 2014. Plans call for the Big Foot development to come on line in late 2015. And we made significant deepwater discoveries in 2014 at the Anchor and Guadalupe prospects.
In 2014, Chevron again ranked No. 1 in net oil-equivalent production in California, primarily from the San Joaquin Valley. Our extensive thermal recovery operations have revolutionized the production of heavy oil from these century-old central California fields. We also are the largest net acreage leaseholder in the Permian Basin of West Texas.
In Canada, most of our crude oil production comes from the Hibernia Field, offshore Newfoundland and Labrador. We are a partner in the Athabasca Oil Sands Expansion Project, which produces bitumen—hydrocarbons mixed with asphalts and tars—from oil sands. We also are evaluating and developing a range of unconventional resource options, such as shale gas development in western Canada. In 2014, we announced a joint venture for the Duvernay Shale in Alberta and have had exploration success. We continue to pursue development opportunities offshore eastern Canada and have interests in the western Canadian Arctic. The Chevron Arctic Center in Calgary, Alberta, is home base for experts on safe and environmentally sound exploration and resource development in the challenging Arctic environment.
Chevron is the only large international energy company with a continuous upstream presence in Saudi Arabia. Our partnership spans more than 70 years. On behalf of the kingdom, we conduct exploration and production activities in the Partitioned Zone between Saudi Arabia and Kuwait. The Large Scale Steamflood Pilot Project at Wafra Field, which involves steamflooding in the First Eocene carbonate reservoir, continued in 2014. Development planning also continues on the Wafra Steamflood Stage 1 Project, a full-field steamflood application in the First Eocene carbonate reservoir, with front-end engineering and design expected to commence in the third quarter of 2015.
In Europe, Chevron has a variety of producing operations and exploration interests in the western region of the Shetland Basin, the Norwegian Barents Sea and the U.K. North Sea. Chevron operations in the North Sea have a track record of technological innovation. The Captain Field was one of the first North Sea fields to employ horizontal drilling.
Updated: May 2015