Suncor slashes spending on oil sands growth by about a billion

Suncor Energy Inc. (NYSE:SU) will reduce spending on the development of oil sands in 2013 by almost CND$1 billion as the fate of its Voyageur upgrader is left in the air.

In its new spending budget released on Monday the company foresees spending of over $1.2 billion on the development of oil sands in 2013, a decline of $1 billion compared to the $2.2 billion allocated in its 2012 budget from November of 2011.

Total spending on oil sands is also set to decline by almost a billion to $4.2 billion in the 2013 budget compared to $5.1 billion in its 2012 budget.

The Globe and Mail reports that the company's unfinished Voyageur upgrader, capable of transforming heavy oil sands crude into lighter oil, may be facing economic difficulties following Suncor CEO Steve Williams' statement that spending on the project would be "minimized" until a final decision on its fate is reached in Q1 2013.