Chevron says it has potential to return up to $80 billion in capital over five years

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The logo of Chevron Corp is seen in its booth at Gastech, the world's biggest expo for the gas industry, in Chiba© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The logo of Chevron Corp is seen in its booth at Gastech, the world’s biggest expo for the gas industry, in Chiba

(Reuters) – Chevron Corp (N:) said on Tuesday it could return as much as $80 billion to shareholders over five years even if oil prices remained low.

Chevron and other energy companies have pledged to curb spending after the collapse in oil prices earlier this decade forced many to borrow to cover costs of long-term projects.

The oil major said it had the potential to distribute between $75 billion and $80 billion over the next five years and would maintain its capital spending in a range of $19 billion to $22 billion annually through the period.

“We remain focused on a returns-driven approach to capital allocation, investing in lower-risk projects,” Chief Financial Officer Pierre Breber said.

Reuters reported on Monday that the company is offering buyouts to reduce its U.S. oil exploration and production workforce as it moves to cut costs in the face of sharply lower oil and gas prices.

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