Calgary-based Cenovus Energy announced Wednesday plans for a five-fold increase in production from its oilsands operations by 2019.

The oil company said it plans to increase output to 300,000 barrels of bitumen per day.


The Cenovus oilsands project at Christina Lake in northern Alberta. ((Canadian Press))

The prediction is based on a recent evaluation done for Cenovus by an outside consultant, which estimates its properties have reserves of 137 billion barrels of oil.

That is a best guess of the total amount of oil in place. How much of that can be recovered depends on the price of oil and whether technology can be developed to exploit the reserves.

The firm says the increase is expected to come from expansions at its operations at Foster Creek and Christina Lake as well as new projects at Narrows Lake and Grand Rapids, all in northern Alberta.

Shares in Cenovus, which made its announcement after the markets closed, ended trading on Wednesday up four cents at $29.99 on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

Cenovus was spun off from natural gas giant Encana in 2009.