Additionally, the 2012 quarter had lower leasehold amortization expense in the Kurdistan region of Iraq compared to the prior year.
Worldwide production totaled 211,833 barrels of oil equivalent per day in the 2012 fourth quarter, an 11% increase from the 190,103 barrels of oil equivalent per day produced in the 2011 quarter. Crude oil, condensate and gas liquids production was 132,918 barrels per day in the 2012 quarter compared to 108,771 barrels per day in 2011. The oil production increase in the current year was primarily attributable to an ongoing development drilling program in the Eagle Ford Shale area of South Texas as well as purchase of additional working interests in the Thunder Hawk and Front Runner fields in the Gulf of Mexico during 2012. Natural gas sales volumes averaged 473 million cubic feet per day in quarter four 2012, down 3% from the 488 million cubic feet per day sold in the prior year’s quarter. The 2012 reduction was primarily attributable to lower gas volumes produced at the Tupper area in Western Canada due to a planned shut-in of certain wells and virtually no development drilling in this area in the 2012 quarter because of continued weak North American natural gas sales prices. Natural gas production in 2012 in the U.S. was above 2011 levels primarily due to the development drilling program in the Eagle Ford Shale.
The average sales price for the Company’s crude oil, condensate and gas liquids was $92.82 per barrel for continuing operations in the 2012 fourth quarter, down from $96.67 per barrel in the 2011 quarter. Natural gas sales prices in North America averaged $3.34 per thousand cubic feet (MCF) in the 2012 quarter, down from $3.67 per MCF in the 2011 quarter. Natural gas sold from fields offshore Sarawak, Malaysia, averaged $6.78 per MCF in the 2012 quarter compared to $7.85 per MCF a year ago.