Media release

Santos Investor Day briefing - the rinse and repeat is becoming farcical

The Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility​ (ACCR) is commenting on Santos Ltd’s 2023 Investor Day, held in Sydney today.

Commenting on the briefing, Alex Hillman, Lead Analyst at the Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility (ACCR) said:

“Despite Santos facing a barrage of uncertainty around its project execution it is still fronting up to investors with the same guidance on Barossa’s timing and cost.

“The reported facts are increasingly at odds with Santos’ characterisation of the risks to its project execution.

“Last month’s results raised important questions for investors about how Santos could deliver Barossa on time and on schedule when the Federal Court has restrained it from commencing work on major components of the project. Since then, Santos has been delayed from commencing a large portion of pipelay activities until at least mid-January 2024 and has made no evident progress on the drilling approvals.

“Some investors will still be questioning Santos on how it can lose a year in the drilling schedule and still be on track.

“Whilst Santos conditions its CEO’s $6 million performance bonus to delivery of  Barossa and other new projects, investors will no doubt be scrutinising the risks of tying massive cash bonuses to growth projects.

“Santos has increased its oil price assumption from last year - up from US$65 per barrel to US$75. While this certainly makes its long-term free cash flow numbers look better, it is hard to see the justification for this and is not supported by the market.

“Despite the IEA recently announcing that gas demand will peak in all of its published scenarios before 2030, Santos continues to talk up its book by claiming LNG demand will inexorably increase until 2040.”


Bloomberg data shows that Brent forward prices have decreased slightly in the last year.

Date (US$/bbl)Santos assumptionForward price for December 2026 delivery (nominal)Forward price for December 2026 delivery (nominal)
8 November 2022 (2022 Investor Briefing Day)65 (Real 2022)73.1969.70
22 November 2023 (2023 Investor Briefing Day)75 (Real 2023)73.0069.26
Change (%)15%-0.3%-0.6%

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