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UPDATE 2-Chevron sees 2018 production up 4-7 pct, plans on buybacks

(Adds details from analyst day presentation, shares)

March 6 (Reuters) - Oil major Chevron Corp said on Tuesday it should be able to raise production by between 4 percent and 7 percent in 2018 and buy back shares for the first time in three years even without a substantial rise in oil prices.

Chevron said it expects to sell off assets, produce more oil at higher margins and lower overall expenses, as industry-wide output climbs and prices stabilize.

The company's shares rose 2 percent to $115.45 in early trading, lifting the broader energy sector higher.

San Ramon, California-based Chevron said it is budgeting capex of $18 billion to $20 billion each year for three years, slightly lower at the midpoint than a previous estimate.

"We intend to maintain capital discipline ... Even with no commodity price appreciation, we expect to deliver stronger upstream cash margins and production growth. This is a powerful combination," Chief Executive Michael Wirth said at an analyst day presentation.

Brent crude has more than doubled since crashing to a 13-year low in 2016 in the wake of a production glut.

Chevron said high margin barrels of oil are expected to increase by more than 200 mboe/d in 2018, while Permian production is expected to reach about 500,000 barrels per day by the end of 2020 and 650,000 by the end of 2022.

The company's overall 2018 production estimate is based on oil prices at $60 a barrel and excludes asset sales, the second biggest U.S. oil producer said.

Chevron also said it expects to grow its free cash flow 2018 onwards, putting the company in a position to resume its share repurchase program.

The company halted buybacks in 2015 to save cash during the slump in oil prices. (Reporting by Ernest Scheyder in Houston and Yashaswini Swamynathan in Bengaluru Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)