Quarterly report pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d)

Income Taxes

Income Taxes
3 Months Ended
Mar. 31, 2021
Income Taxes [Abstract]  
Income Taxes 15. INCOME TAXES

The income tax provision for VAALCO consists primarily of Gabonese and United States income taxes. The Company’s operations in other foreign jurisdictions have a 0% effective tax rate because the Company has incurred losses in those countries and has full valuation allowances against the corresponding net deferred tax assets. The Company files income tax returns in all jurisdictions where such requirements exist, with Gabon and the United States being its primary tax jurisdictions.

For interim reporting periods, the Company determines its tax expense by estimating an annual effective income tax rate based on current and forecasted business results and enacted tax laws on a quarterly basis and applies this tax rate to the Company’s ordinary income or loss to calculate its estimated tax expense or benefit. The tax effect of discrete items is recognized in the period in which they occur at the applicable statutory tax rate.

In March 2020, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (the “CARES Act”) became law. The CARES Act, among other things, includes provisions to obtain alternative minimum tax credit refunds for which the Company qualifies. The Company has analyzed the different aspects of the CARES Act and implemented the applicable provisions, which had no material impact on the Company.

Provision for income tax expense (benefit) related to income from continuing operations consists of the following:

Three Months Ended March 31,



U.S. Federal:

(in thousands)




















The Company’s effective tax rate for the three months ended March 31, 2021 and 2020, excluding the impact of discrete items, was (64%) and (68%), respectively. For the three months ended March 31, 2021, the Company’s overall effective tax rate was impacted by non-deductible items associated with operations, the impact of deducting foreign taxes rather than crediting them, and a change in valuation allowance. The valuation allowance was necessary due to the decline in crude oil prices caused by declining global economic activity and excess oil supply. The total change in valuation allowances for the three months ended March 31, 2021 was $(2.3) million. For the three months ended March 31, 2021 the current tax expense of $3.4 million includes a $0.5 million unfavorable oil price adjustment as a result of the change in value of the government’s allocation between the time it was produced and the time it was taken in-kind. After excluding the impact, current income taxes were $2.9 million for the period.

As of March 31, 2021, the Company had no material uncertain tax positions. The Company’s policy is to recognize potential interest and penalties related to unrecognized tax benefits as a component of income tax expense.