BP’s LNG Carrier Fleet is Growing
BP said it will take delivery of six new, state-of-the-art liquefied natural gas (LNG) tankers in 2018 and 2019 to support its expanding global LNG portfolio. BP’s finance partners KMarin and ICBC Leasing are investing more than $1 billion in the tankers. The vessels will join BP’s exixting fleet to help service a 20-year liquefaction contract with the Freeport LNG facility in Texas, as well as other international LNG projects in BP’s global portfolio. “These vessels will significantly increase BP’s ability to safely transport LNG to anywhere in the world, directly supporting BP’s global natural gas strategy,” said BP Shipping CEO Susan Dio.
Where's the Money? Oil Traders Ask as Peak Demand Looms
Traders still see opportunities in oil trading as Mercuria bets on power markets in U.S., China. For major trading houses that ship millions of barrels of oil every day, the prospect of diminishing fuel demand and a shift to renewable power poses a brain-racking challenge with few obvious solutions. "It is a very fair question - what the hell are we going to do?" said Ian Taylor, chief executive of the world's top oil trader Vitol, which trades seven percent of the world's oil. "It's not obvious. We will still have a business, I'm sure, but it may well be a very different business," he told the Reuters Commodities Summit.
Chevron Starts LNG Output at Wheatstone Project
Chevron Corporation announced it has started producing liquefied natural gas (LNG) at the Wheatstone Project in Western Australia. The first cargo is on track to be shipped in the coming weeks. “First LNG production is a significant milestone and is a credit to our partners, contractors and the many thousands of people who collaborated to deliver this legacy asset,” said Chevron Chairman and CEO John Watson. At full capacity, the Wheatstone Project’s two train LNG facility will supply 8.9 million metric tons per year of LNG for export to customers in Asia.
Yamal LNG to Ship Two LNG Cargoes in November
The Russian Yamal LNG project will ship the first two cargoes of liquefied natural gas in November, followed by another four in December, Russia's customs service said on Tuesday. The Yamal LNG project is co-owned by local Russian gas producer Novatek, as well as France's Total, China's CNPC and the Silk Road Fund. Reporting by Oksana Kobzeva
Asian Spot LNG at Highest Level Since January
Spot LNG prices hit $8.5/mmBtu as market tightens, but market outlook remains weak due to rising output. Asian spot prices for liquefied natural gas (LNG) edged to their highest level since January this week, as the market gradually tightened ahead of the peak-demand winter heating season and as consumption in China soars amid its huge gasification programme. Spot prices Asian LNG <LNG-AS> rose 10 cents to $8.50 per million British thermal units (mmBtu), their highest since January this year. Climbing Chinese demand amid…
Australia Ramps Up LNG Exports
Australia LNG exports tipped to rise to 74 mt in 2018-19; Australia's share of Japan, Korea LNG imports seen growing. Australia expects to increase exports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) by 16 percent from mid-2018 as $180 billion in new projects hit their stride, nearly catching up with Qatar, the world's top supplier. Rising LNG exports coupled with higher prices for steel-making commodities and thermal coal should see Australia's overall resource and energy export earnings increase 2 percent in the year to end-June 2018, to a record A$211 billion ($165 billion), the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science said on Friday.
Saudi Aramco IPO on Track for 2018
A plan to list Saudi Aramco in 2018 is on track, senior Saudi officials said in Moscow on Thursday, as Saudi Arabia gears up to sign a string of investment agreements with Russia. The plan to float around 5 percent of Aramco in an initial public offering (IPO) is a centrepiece of Vision 2030, a wide-ranging reform plan to diversify the Saudi economy beyond oil which is being championed by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman. "Work is ongoing to list Saudi Aramco in 2018," Aramco's Chief Executive Amin Nasser said at an energy forum in Moscow.
Buyers Eye Sinopec's Argentina Oil Assets
Sinopec's Argentine assets worth about $750 mln-$1 bln; Sonangol, Rosneft among potential suitors. Advisers to China's Sinopec have offered its oil assets in Argentina to about a dozen potential suitors, three sources familiar with the matter said, as losses and labour headaches prompt Asia's largest refiner to pull out. The Argentine oil and gas assets, mainly in the southern province of Santa Cruz, could be worth $750 million to $1 billion, one of the sources said. That would be less than half the $2.45 billion Sinopec paid in 2010 to buy the Argentine assets from U.S.-based Occidental Petroleum Corp…
MET International Plans to Boost LNG Trades
Switzerland-based MET International AG plans to boost its liquefied natural gas (LNG) trades in Europe by 50 to 100 percent next year, the company's chief executive said on Tuesday. Gyorgy Vargha said that while the company had traded one cargo, or 60,000 tonnes of LNG, per month this year, this is expected to rise to between 1.5 and two cargoes per month in 2018 as MET seeks to increase its role in that segment. MET International was established in 2010 as the natural gas trading arm of parent MET Group, whose activities include gas, oil and power generation in Hungary, Croatia, Romania, Slovakia, Switzerland and the United Kingdom, among others.
Gastrade Signs LNG Deal with State-owned DEPA
Greece's state controlled natural gas firm DEPA signed a cooperation agreement on Thursday with natural gas company Gastrade to participate in the development of a liquified natural gas terminal in northern Greece, DEPA said. Greece currently has one LNG terminal on an islet off Athens. Gastrade, part of Greek energy group Copelouzos, is planning a second LNG terminal near the northern city of Alexandroupolis. The project has been described as a 'project of common interest' by the European Union. Gastrade will hold at least 20 percent stake in the scheme, a source close to the matter said, with LNG carrier operator GasLog another 20 percent.
Petronas' Canadian Unit to Look at other LNG Opportunities
Progress Energy, a wholly-owned unit of Malaysia's Petronas, will look at other liquefied natural gas opportunities as a way to monetize its Canadian gas assets after Petronas scrapped a $29 billion LNG project this year, a company executive said on Wednesday. Petronas, the Malaysian state-owned energy company, abandoned plans to build the Pacific Northwest LNG plant in northern British Columbia in July due to weak prices, leaving Progress with 800,000 acres of land rights in the Montney shale play and 50 trillion cubic feet a day of reserves.
Keyera, Chevron Ink NGL Transport, Storage Deal
Canadian pipeline operator Keyera Corp said on Tuesday it signed a 20-year agreement with Chevron's Canadian unit to transport and store natural gas liquids (NGL). Under the deal, Chevron will deliver about 50 percent of its NGL from its Kaybob Duvernay operations near Fox Creek, Alberta to Keyera for storage and terminal services. Keyera said it might expand its facilities in the future, depending on the success and scale of Chevron's Duvernay program. Reporting by John Benny
Speculators Cut U.S. NatGas Net Longs Again - CFTC
U.S. natural gas speculators cut their net long positions for a second week in a row on less cold winter forecasts and an increase in production to record levels. Speculators in four major New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX) and Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) markets reduced their bullish bets by 28,839 contracts to 225,886 in the week to Oct. 3, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission said on Friday. Reporting by Scott DiSavino
IEnova Ups Stake in Mexican Natural Gas Pipeline
Mexico's Infraestructura Energetica Nova (IEnova) said Friday it had acquired state oil firm Pemex's stake in the joint venture Ductos y Energeticos del Norte, increasing its participation in the second phase of a key natural gas pipeline. As a result of the transaction, IEnova's indirect stake in the project known as Ramones II North, will increase to 50 percent from 25 percent, said IEnova, a unit of U.S.-based Sempra Energy. The value of the operation is approximately $520 million, the company said. Reporting by Julia Love and Veronica Gomez
Ketelaars Takes the Lead for DNV GL - Oil & Gas in the Americas
Frank Ketelaars took up the position of Director of Region Americas in DNV GL – Oil & Gas on 1 October, as North America’s energy system undergoes a transition. DNV GL’s recently published Energy Transition Outlook shows significant shifts in US federal energy and climate change policies. Reducing dependence on imports is a key driver for the energy transition in North America. Large shale gas reserves have enhanced energy security, enabling the substitution of coal-fired power plants with gas-fired capacities and complementing the shift to renewables. Liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals will diversify sources of import and boost exports.
Statoil Says Ireland's Corrib Gas Outage Extended
An outage in the output of Ireland's Corrib gas field has been extended by 24 hours to Oct. 7 at 0600 CET (0400 GMT), Norway's Statoil said in a statement on Thursday. The Corrib field's output will be reduced by 9.9 million cubic metres per day. Statoil did not say why the outage was extended. Reporting by Lefteris Karagiannopoulos
Future of LNG's Asian Rally Uncertain
The spot price of liquefied natural gas (LNG) in Asia is enjoying its traditional surge ahead of peak winter demand, and the near 40 percent rally over the past six weeks probably has further to go. While exporters of the super-chilled fuel will no doubt be trying to maximise the number of spot cargoes they offer, of more interest to them may be how steep the post-winter drop is likely to be. Much of the current boost to prices is due to stronger-than-expected Chinese demand, as Beijing expands use of the cleaner-burning fuel in place of coal for winter heating.
Vitol Returns for $8 Bln Loan Refinancing
Geneva-headquartered energy and commodities trader Vitol has signed an US$8bn loan refinancing of credit facilities agreed in October 2016, the company announced on Wednesday. The revolving credit facility, which is used for working capital and general corporate purposes, comprises a three-year tranche and a 364-day tranche. The three-year tranche totals over US$7bn. ABN AMRO Bank, Commerzbank, Credit Agricole CIB, HSBC Bank and ING Bank were active bookrunners on the transaction. Bank of America Merrill Lynch, MUFG, BNP Paribas…
H-Energy to Start West Coast LNG Terminal in May 2018
India's H-Energy Pvt Ltd, a unit of real estate group Hiranandani, will start operations at its liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal in the western Maharashtra state by May 2018, its chief executive said on Wednesday. India plans to raise the share of natural gas in its energy mix to 15 percent in three years from the current 6.5 percent, according to a plan set out by Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government. H-Energy has invested 17 billion rupees ($261 million) to build its 4 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) regassification terminal near the Jaigarh port in the state, Darshan Hiranandani told Reuters.
Turkey to Increase Gas Imports
Iran will pump more natural gas to Turkey as part Tehran's plans to expand its economic ties with its neighbour, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani told a joint news conference with his Turkish counterpart in Tehran, state TV reported on Wednesday. "During our meeting today, we agreed to widen our economic ties ...Turkey will import more gas from Iran ...meetings will be held next week to discuss the details," Rouhani said after his meeting with President Tayyip Erdogan. (Writing by Parisa Hafezi; editing by Jason Neely)
Chinese Demand Ensures Asian LNG Rally Has Legs
Unexpectedly strong demand from China, along with rising oil and coal prices, should keep Asian liquefied natural gas (LNG) spot levels buoyant this winter. Despite rising supplies from new plants, spot prices have risen by 55 percent from their 2017 lows to $8.40 per million British thermal units (mmBtu) as Asian buyers also refilled summer stocks. With the peak demand October-March winter gas season almost underway, further price gains are expected. Nuclear outages in Taiwan and rising demand from Thailand, as well as new buyers like Pakistan, are absorbing oversupply of LNG faster than expected, traders and analysts said.
Wison Launches Buoyant Tower Solutions with Storage
Wison Offshore & Marine has developed a new Buoyant Tower solution with condensate or oil storage, adopting Wison’s proprietary Buoyant Tower technology. This floating concept provides a new economic and reliable option for the oil and gas development in the shallow to medium-depth waters. Originally invented by Ed Horton and Lyle Finn, the Buoyant Tower technology was first applied to BPZ CX-15 project offshore Peru when both Ed and Lyle worked for Horton Wison Deepwater Inc. (HWD), now renamed as Wison Offshore Technology Inc. with 130+ patents originated by Ed Horton and his fellows transferred from HWD.
Edison to Buy US LNG from Venture Global
Edison, the Italian utility owned by France's EDF, has agreed to buy 1 million tons of liquefied natural gas (LNG) per year from Venture Global LNG, the companies said on Wednesday. The LNG will come from the Calcasieu Pass LNG export facility Venture Global is developing in the United States, a joint statement by the two companies said. Under the deal Edison will buy the gas on a free-on-board basis for a period of 20 years starting from when the facility begins commercial operations in 2021. Reporting by Stephen Jewkes
Chesapeake Energy Expects Q3 15 pct Output Drop
Chesapeake Energy Corp said it expects a 15 percent drop in third-quarter production due to disruptions in weather, asset sales and changes in capital allocation. The natural gas producer said it expects current-quarter production to be about 542,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day(boepd), lower than the 638,100 boepd a year earlier. The company also said it now expects its adjusted production forecast for the full-year to range between a drop of 1 percent and an increase of 1 percent, compared with its previous view of flat to 4 percent growth. Reporting by Yashaswini Swamynathan
Australian Supply Crunch Squeezes LNG Exporters
Spot LNG exports in government's cross-hairs; ConocoPhillips, Origin, Shell now in the firing line. The Australian government on Monday warned that the country's east faced a worse-than-expected natural gas shortfall in 2018, but the competition watchdog said the gap could easily be filled by diverting uncontracted exports to the local market. It is now up to the government to decide by Nov. 1 whether to pull the trigger on its Australian Domestic Gas Security Mechanism, which allows it to curb liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports from the nation's east coast if it determines there will be a shortfall in any year.
Oil Hits Eight-Month High as Inventories Drop
Brent hits highest since January; major producers confirm global inventories falling. Oil prices rose on Monday to their highest in eight months after major producers said at a meeting in Vienna the global market was well on its way towards rebalancing. The November Brent crude futures contract was up 79 cents at $57.65 a barrel by 1134 GMT, its highest since January 3. U.S. crude for November delivery was up 41 cents at $51.07 a barrel, close to recent four-month highs. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries…
Statoil Output to Rise by 15.5 mcm/day
Statoil's said on Monday its gas output would increase by 15.5 million cubic metres per day from Sept. 26 at 0600 CET (0400 GMT) until Sept. 27 at 0600 CET (0400 GMT) due to maintenance ending early at an unnamed site. "Increased avalibility due to maintenance ending early," the firm said in a message on its website. Reporting by Lefteris Karagiannopoulos
Mission Accomplished? OPEC Banishes Contango
“There is no doubt that the oil market is moving in the right direction,” the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries noted with satisfaction in its most recent bulletin published on Wednesday. “The rebalancing process was never going to happen overnight; it was never going to happen in a linear fashion; and it was always going to require a concerted effort,” OPEC observed. “Patience and perseverance are still required”, the bulletin warned, but the organisation is well on the way to achieving the objectives it set when announcing output cuts in November 2016.
Statoil to Reduce Gas Output Sept 24-25
Statoil's gas output will be reduced by 6.5 million standard cubic metres per day from September 24 at 0600 CET (0400 GMT) until September 25 at 0600 CET (0400 GMT), the firm said on Wednesday. "Decreased field availability moved by one day to the 24th September," the firm said in a message. Reporting by Henrik Stolen
Glencore Inks Angolan LNG Purchase Deal
Trading house Glencore is to buy liquefied natural gas (LNG) supplies from Angola LNG over a multi-year period, adding to similar recent deals between the producer and traders including Vitol. Angola LNG on Wednesday said the deal was another step toward building its sales book with the most important players in the LNG market. Last month it sold LNG to Vitol over a multi-year period and also entered a sales deal with the trading arm of Germany's RWE . Until recently, Angola has been selling all of its LNG via competitive tenders in the spot market, partly because a previous plan to ship LNG to the United States fell through because of the U.S.
Oil Nears Five-Month Highs
Saudi crude exports fell to three-year low in July, as U.S. shale output seen rising for 10th month in October. Oil prices traded close to five-month highs on Tuesday after key Middle Eastern producers showed they continued to comply with output cuts under an OPEC-led deal that Iraq's oil minister said could be extended or deepened. A weaker U.S. dollar also lent support to dollar-denominated commodities such as oil, traders said. Benchmark Brent crude futures were up 20 cents at $55.68 a barrel by 1200 GMT, not far off a five-month high of $55.99. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were up 35 cents at $50.26.
Saipem CEO: Nord Stream II on Track if 'conditions right'
The Nord Stream II pipeline project will go ahead if conditions are right but sanctions may impact on work, the chief executive of Italian oil services group Saipem said on Tuesday. Nord Stream II, led by Russian gas giant Gazprom, aims to increase Russian natural gas exports to Europe by doubling the amount of gas Russia sends to Germany under the Baltic Sea. Saipem in August was awarded a contract to build the last section of the pipeline. "There are discussions ongoing; for now we've been given a piece of the project and will go through with it if the conditions are right," Cao told journalists on the sidelines of an event in Milan.
Mitsui OSK Targets 26% Stake in Swan's Indian LNG Unit
Japan's leading shipper Mitsui OSK Lines aims to buy at least a 26 percent stake in a floating storage regassification unit (FSRU) in India, a company official said, to boost its exposure in the west coast project of Swan Energy. Swan Energy is building a 5 million tonnes a year FSRU and floating storage unit (FSU) at Jafrabad in western Gujarat state, with Mitsui awarded a long-term contract for operation and maintenance services. "We have until end-2019, by when the project will be completed, to buy at least 26 percent in Triumph Offshore…
GTT to Design LNG Tanks for FSRU Newbuild
GTT said it has received an order from the South Korean Shipyard Hyundai Heavy Industries concerning a new Floating Storage and Regasification Unit (FSRU) which has been contracted by Triumph Offshore, a subsidiary of the Indian ship-owner Swan Energy. GTT will design the LNG integrated tanks which represent a total capacity of 180,000 m3. These tanks will be equipped with the membrane containment system Mark III, a sea-proven technology developed by GTT. This insulation system benefits from an unparalleled track record: it has been already used to equip more than 140 vessels which are still in service today.
Gazprom Signs LNG Supply Deal with Ghana
Russian gas giant Gazprom has signed a 12-year deal to supply Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) with liquefied natural gas, a subsidiary of Gazprom Marketing & Trading Group said on Monday. Gazprom Global LNG Limited (GGLNG) said LNG supplies were due to start in 2019. The agreement is the first stage in a planned series of partnerships between GGLNG and GNPC, with both companies working to develop the infrastructure and services required to manage and market the projected gas flows from the region, Gazprom said. It did not disclose further details. (Reporting by Vladimir Soldatkin; editing by Susan Thomas)
Oil Nears Five-Month Highs
Brent, WTI on track for biggest weekly gains in two months; U.S. refineries restarting after hurricane shutdowns. Brent oil prices held steady near five-month highs, and were on track for the highest weekly rise since the end of July on higher demand forecasts and the restart of oil-hungry refineries in the United States. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries this week forecast higher demand for its oil in 2018 and pointed to signs of a tighter global market, indicating its deal with non-OPEC states to cut output is helping tackle a glut.
CNOOC Ends Feasibility Study for Western Canadian LNG Terminal
China's CNOOC Ltd said on Thursday it will end the feasibility study for its (LNG) export terminal on British Columbia's coast due to low global commodity prices, in the latest setback for Canada's energy industry. Nexen Energy, a unit of CNOOC, said in a statement the current macro-economic environment does not currently support developing a large LNG business. The project, a joint venture with Japan's Inpex Corp , would have had the capacity to export 24 million tonnes of LNG per year, granting Canadian gas producers access to the Asian market.
Netherlands to Receive LNG from Sabine Pass Plant
The Netherlands will receive its second-ever liquefied natural gas (LNG) shipment from Cheniere Energy's Sabine Pass export facility in the United States on Oct. 6, according to shipping data. The vessel, with a capacity of 166,031 cubic metres, is currently berthed at Sabine Pass, live ship-tracking data shows. The first delivery from Sabine Pass to the Gate terminal in Rotterdam arrived on June 8 aboard the Arctic Discoverer, a Thomson Reuters analyst said. Reporting by Oleg Vukmanovic
Eni Inks Cooperation Deal with CNPC
Eni signed a cooperation agreement with China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) on Wednesday in a move that could give the Italian oil major greater access to the Chinese market. Eni said in a statement it had agreed to work with state-owned CNPC in the fields of exploration and production, liquefied natural gas (LNG), trading and refining-petrochemicals. The deal will cover operations in China and abroad, it said, without giving further details. "It could allow Eni to tap Chinese resources while allowing CNPC to use Eni skills to develop its assets round the world," one London-based oil analyst said, asking not to be named.
Shell to Shed Iraqi Oil Assets
Royal Dutch Shell is set to end a century of oil production in Iraq by withdrawing from two of the Arab state's flagship fields to focus on more profitable gas development. Shell's retreat highlights the challenges foreign operators face with low-margin oil contracts in Iraq, an OPEC member that sits on some of the world's biggest oil reserves and wants to boost production after years of conflict hindered development. The Anglo-Dutch firm said on Wednesday it had agreed with Iraq's oil ministry to relinquish operations at Majnoon field to the government after unfavourable changes to fiscal terms.
Bangladesh, Qatar to Ink 15-year LNG Import Deal
Bangladesh to take 1.8 mln T a year first 5 years, along with more spot cargoes. Bangladesh will sign a 15-year deal with Qatar's RasGas Co to import liquefied natural gas (LNG) starting in 2018 as the South Asian country turns to the supercooled fuel to fill a domestic supply gap for power generation, two officials told Reuters. The deal will be signed on Sept. 25 in Qatar, said Mohammad Quamruzzaman, managing director of the Rupantarita Prakritik Gas Co, a unit of state-owned oil firm Petrobangla. Under the deal, RasGas will supply 1.8 million tonnes a year of LNG for the first five years and 2.5 million tonnes a year for the next 10 after that…
Oil Rises on IEA Optimism
IEA raises 2017 global oil demand growth; says investors sees tighter market, higher oil prices. Oil prices rose on Wednesday after the International Energy Agency (IEA) said the global oil surplus was starting to shrink due to robust global demand and an output drop from OPEC and other producers. By 1021 GMT, international benchmark Brent crude was up 27 cents, or 0.5 percent, at $54.54 a barrel. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) was up 38 cents, or 0.8 percent, at $48.61 a barrel. "Based on recent bets made by investors…
CFE Awards 9-Cargo LNG Tender for Q4 Delivery
Mexico's state-run power utility CFE has picked Royal Dutch Shell and most likely Cheniere Energy to deliver nine liquefied natural gas (LNG) cargoes in the fourth-quarter, trade sources said. Traders said Shell won most of the tender, which was awarded on Tuesday, with shipments to be spread across October, November and December into the Altamira terminal on Mexico's Atlantic coast, traders said. Some traders said Cheniere took a share of CFE's requirement. Reporting by Oleg Vukmanovic
Swiss Traders Grab $10 Billion Slice of LNG Market
Traders mopping up LNG glut, finding new emerging market buyers. Swiss trading houses are muscling in on the global market for liquefied natural gas, until now the preserve of energy giants, and expect to grab a $10 billion share of the rapidly growing business this year. Trafigura, Gunvor, Vitol and Glencore are all shaking up a decades-old system dominated by Western oil majors and state energy producers which sell LNG directly to large consumers on long-term contracts. They plan 2017 shipments that will be more than triple the 2015 level, according to Reuters calculations based on figures for the four traders provided by trade sources.
ABS Awards AIP for HHI FLNG Hull Design
ABS has granted Approval in Principle (AIP) to Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG) hull design. ABS and HHI collaborated with the objective of developing a technically feasible and class compliant FLNG hull design, using the latest industry trends while maintaining high safety standards. The ABS AIP demonstrates the design substantially complies with Class and Regulatory requirements and minimizes risk to project schedules and safe operations, giving regulatory agencies and other key stakeholders confidence in the design.
Bangladesh shortlists Trafigura, Gunvor for LNG Terminals
Bangladesh has shortlisted global commodity traders Trafigura and Gunvor to arrange the installation of two floating liquefied natural gas (LNG) import terminals in 2018 as the country transforms into a major LNG consumer. "Trafigura and Gunvor have been shortlisted out of 13 companies for two 200 million cubic feet/day LNG import terminals," a director at state-run energy firm Petrobangla's LNG division told Reuters. Petrobangla will hold talks with the companies and deals will then be finalised, he added. Industry sources say Bangladesh wants the terminals, also known as Floating Storage and Regasification Units (FSRU), in place in 2018.
Wood Group Wins Ichthys Subsea Deal
Wood Group has secured a new, five-year contract with INPEX Operations Australia Pty Ltd (INPEX Australia) to provide subsea engineering services for the integrity of the INPEX-operated Ichthys LNG Project, offshore Western Australia. The operations of all subsea assets and the gas export pipeline will be supported under the contract which includes two, one-year extension options and is effective immediately. It continues Wood Group’s 12-year support of the Ichthys LNG Project development; providing subsea engineering and project management services during the concept, front-end, and detailed engineering phases of the project.
US Seeks Faster Approval of Small-scale Natural Gas Export
The United States is proposing to speed up approval of small-scale exports of natural gas, including liquefied natural gas (LNG), the U.S. Department of Energy said in a statement released on Friday. The department said the proposed rule would "expedite the review and approval of applications to export small amounts of natural gas in the emerging small-scale LNG export market," which it said includes the Caribbean, Central America and South America. To date, most applications for export approval have been for larger-scale natural gas exports, but Central and South American markets require smaller volumes, the Energy Department said.
Harvey Interrupts Asia LPG Exports from Gulf Coast
Harvey delays at least 300,000 T of U.S. LPG shipments. Shipments of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) from the United States have been held up by the havoc wrought by tropical storm Harvey since last Friday, but Asian buyers are betting the situation will improve before supplies are critically squeezed. At least 300,000 tonnes in LPG shipments to Asia have been delayed after U.S. Gulf ports were shut, based on the estimates from four sources who buy mainly U.S. cargoes. Asia is short of LPG, which in the form of butane or propane is used for transportation, heating, cooking and petrochemical production.
Gazprom Doesn't Rule Out More Rival LNG to Europe
Russian gas giant Gazprom did not rule out an increase in liquefied natural gas flows to Europe from its rivals, though Asian markets are more attractive for the fuel due to higher prices, a company official said on Wednesday. "There is possibility that there will be more LNG supplies to Europe... however because of more interesting pricing, LNG goes to other markets, to Asian markets," Mikhail Malgin from Gazprom Export said. "There is a potential on the market, there is place for us and our rivals," he added. Reporting by Vladimir Soldatkin
Trelleborg Suite Supplied to Prelude FLNG
Trelleborg’s marine systems operation has supplied a suite of products to Shell’s Prelude FLNG facility, the largest offshore facility ever constructed. Prelude, which is 488 meters long, 74 meters wide, and made with more than 260,000 tons of steel, will extract and liquefy natural gas from a site in North West Australia. Trelleborg supplied its gas transfer technology and SafePilot navigational and piloting systems for Prelude. “Our SafePilot solution, SSL, ESL and radio ESD for tandem condensate offload have been used on Shell’s Prelude FLNG,” said Richard Hepworth, President of Trelleborg’s marine systems operation.
Kinder Morgan Shutting Down Pipelines, Gas Facilities due Harvey
Kinder Morgan has started shutting down parts of its KMCC pipeline system for crude and condensate, its Double Eagle pipeline, several gas storage facilities and compressor stations due to Hurricane Harvey, the firm said on Friday. The pipeline operating firm said the measures have been taken in preparation for high winds and heavy rain, which could affect portions of its Tennessee Gas Pipeline (TGP), Texas Interstate system and its Natural Gas Pipeline Company of America (NGPL), the largest transporter of gas into Chicago. Reporting by Marianna Parraga
S-Oil, Petronas Ink Long-term LNG Deal
South Korea's third-largest refiner S-Oil Corp signed a long-term liquefied natural gas (LNG) supply contract with Malaysia's Petronas for 15 years starting from next year, the North Asia company said on Friday. S-Oil expects to buy 700,000 tonnes of LNG per year from state-owned Petronas from March 2018 through March 2033, it said in a stock filing exchange. "We have inked the deal on good terms for our company amid the current favourable LNG market conditions," said the refiner in the filing. S-Oil, whose main shareholder is Saudi Aramco, declined to provide price details for the deal.
North American Exodus at PetroChina Sparks Speculation
A flurry of departures across the U.S. and Canadian units of Chinese state energy firm PetroChina Co Ltd have sparked speculation that the oil trader is reducing its presence in North America, even though the company says it is committed to the region. More than 30 people in its Houston and Calgary offices have left PetroChina since 2016, including heads of desks in crude, financial, natural gas and chemical trading, the company confirmed to Reuters. Sources say that PetroChina had approximately 150 to 200 people at its peak two to three years ago, and now has between 100 and 150.
Oil Search Profit Soars, Now Focusing on Gas Projects
Oil Search sees PNG LNG expansion agreement by late 2017. Australia's Oil Search Ltd reported a five-fold jump in half-year profit on higher oil and gas prices and lower costs, and said it expects its partners to agree by year-end on how to coordinate development of their Papua New Guinea gas projects. Net profit surged to $129.1 million for the six months to June, in line with three analysts' estimates, while the oil and gas explorer boosted its dividend by a cent to 4 cents a share. Oil Search is a partner in the PNG LNG project and P'nyang field…
Ghana, Equatorial Guinea to Sign LNG Deal
Ghana's President Nana Akufo-Addo plans to sign an agreement to import liquefied natural gas (LNG) from Equatorial Guinea during his three-day visit to the Gulf of Guinea petroleum producer due to begin on Monday, his office said. Though an oil and gas producer in its own right since its flagship Jubilee field came on stream in 2010, Ghana has in the past struggled to ensure reliable power production for a growing domestic market. Equatorial Guinea, meanwhile, is exploring the possibility of selling a portion of its LNG cargos to its African neighbours.
Gunvor Awarded Fortuna FLNG Offtake
The Ministry of Mines and Hydrocarbons (MMH), Ophir Equatorial Guinea (Block R) Ltd, OneLNG SA and La Compania Nacional De Petroleos De Guinea Ecuatorial (GEPetrol) have nominated Gunvor Group Ltd (Gunvor) as its preferred LNG Buyer for offtake from the Fortuna FLNG project. All parties have agreed the principal commercial terms subject to finalizing a Sale and Purchase Agreement (SPA) for the offtake ahead of the Final Investment Decision (FID) on the Fortuna FLNG project. Gunvor will take the full contract capacity of the Gandria FLNG vessel of 2.2 MMTPA which will be purchased on a Brent-linked, Free on Board (FOB) basis for a 10 year term.
Lithuania Receives First U.S. LNG Cargo
Lithuania received its first spot shipment of liquefied natural gas (LNG) from the United States on Monday, the result of a deal aimed at reducing dependence on Russia and consolidating relations with Washington amid increased tension in the region. Russia's annexation of Crimea in 2014 has spooked the Baltic states, once ruled from Moscow but now members of both NATO and the European Union. "This is crucially important for the whole region," said Lithuania's Foreign Affairs Minister Linas Linkevicius. "We want to cement…
Norway's Record July Gas Sales Could Lift Statoil Earnings
Norwegian gas sales hit a record July high, boosted by maintenance at British North Sea fields and the need to restock gas storage in Europe, which analysts said would deliver strong quarterly earnings for top producer Statoil. Total gas sales from Norway, Europe's second-largest supplier, rose to 10.6 billion cubic metres from 8.6 bcm in June and were 18 percent above official forecasts, the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) said on Friday. Preliminary gas sales figures were the highest ever recorded for the month of July, it added.
Energy Capital-led Consortium to buy Calpine Corp
Debt-laden power producer Calpine Corp said it agreed to be acquired by a consortium of investors led by Energy Capital Partners for $5.6 billion. Calpine's shares were up 10.5 percent at $14.93 in premarket trading on Friday. The $15.25 cash per share offer, represents a 13 percent premium to Calpine's closing price on Thursday. The consortium includes billionaire industrialist Leonard Blavatnik's Access Industries and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board. U.S. power producers like Calpine have been hit by low wholesale power prices due to cheap natural gas, growth of renewable energy and subsidized nuclear generation in certain states.
Australia Risks Missing Next LNG Wave: Russell
Should the arrival of the last major piece of kit in Australia's $180 billion liquefied natural gas (LNG) spree be a cause for celebration or for a wake? It may seem that the arrival of the Ichthys Venturer floating production, storage and offloading facility would be worthy of breaking out the champagne. The vessel, which will be moored some 220 kilometres (132 miles) off the northwestern coast as part of Inpex's Ichthys project, is the final piece of the jigsaw that completes eight massive new LNG ventures. These projects…
Saudi Aramco Mulls Bids to Expand Gas Plant
Saudi Aramco has received bids from international engineering firms to expand the Hawiyah gas plant, industry sources said on Wednesday as the state oil giant continues spending to expand its core business. The companies that submitted their proposals on Sunday are: South Korean Samsung Engineering, Spain's Tecnicas Reunidas, Taiwan's CTCI, Italy's Saipem , Britain's Petrofac, India's Larsen & Toubro (L&T). South Korea's Hyundai Engineering and Hyundai Development Co Engineering & Construction (HDEC) bid together as a consortium. Saudi Aramco does not comment on rumour or speculation, it said of the report. Hyundai declined to comment.
Cheniere Energy to Open China Office
U.S. natural gas exporter Cheniere Energy Inc is setting up an office in Beijing to help it clinch long-term supply deals with Chinese buyers, four industry sources said. Cheniere, which held extensive talks with China earlier this year, will be the first operator of a U.S. liquefied natural gas (LNG) export facility to establish a presence in the country. The move follows an agreement in May between the U.S and China to boost trade under the so-called 100-day trade talks that will allow Chinese buyers to purchase long-term supplies from the U.S. directly.
Wison Granted AIP for Its Innovative Floating LNG Storage
Wison Offshore & Marine announced that it has received Approval in Principle (AIP) from Bureau Veritas for its newly-developed large-scale Floating LNG Storage and Regasification Terminal. Featuring scalable storage capacity up to equivalent size of a Q-Max, this is the first large-scale FSRU barge design that has been granted AIP by a classification society. It also marks that Wison is now capable of providing comprehensive range of FSRU solutions catering LNG import markets with various scales of demand. This full-size…
Sakhalin II LNG Export Plant Awards 3-cargo Tender
Russia's Sakhalin II liquefied natural gas (LNG) export facility has awarded its three-cargo tender to Royal Dutch Shell, Gazprom and Mitsui, trade sources said. The plant offered three October cargoes loading on Oct. 5, 7 and 15, they said. The companies are estimated to have paid about $6.30 per million British thermal units (mmBtu) per cargo, traders said. (Reporting by Oleg Vukmanovic)
Trafigura to Lift Angolan LNG Cargo
Commodity trader Trafigura purchased a liquefied natural gas (LNG) cargo offered by Angola's export facility through a tender, trade sources said. The cargo, which loaded on Aug. 7-9, attracted a price in the $6 per million British thermal units (mmBtu) range, they said. Reporting by Oleg Vukmanovic
US LNG Exports to Increase: EIA
U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA)'s latest Short-Term Energy Outlook projects that the United States will export more natural gas than it imports in 2017. The U.S. has been a net exporter for three of the past four months and is expected to continue to export more natural gas than it imports for the rest of 2017 and throughout 2018. The nation’ status as a net exporter is expected to continue past 2018 because of growing U.S. natural gas exports to Mexico, declining pipeline imports from Canada, and increasing exports of liquefied natural gas (LNG). The U.S.
ENI, Anadarko to Build LNG Terminals in Mozambique
Italy's ENI and U.S. oil and gas firm Anadarko signed agreements with the Mozambique government on Thursday to build two liquefied natural gas terminals in the southern African country. The terminals will be built in Cabo Delgado province, where Mozambique has made massive gas discoveries that could transform it from a poor African country into a major energy supplier to Asia. The agreements were signed by Mozambique's energy minister Letícia Klemens and the regional heads of ENI and Anadarko, a Texas-based oil producer. The two companies will separately build their own terminals, Klemens told a press conference.
Petrobras Authorized to Export Idle LNG Cargoes
Brazil's Petroleo Brasileiro SA has been authorized to export idle liquefied natural gas (LNG) in the spot market, according to the Wednesday issue of the official gazette. According to the text, Petrobras has been given the green light to export up to 6.6 million cubic meters, assuming this would not result in supply problems for the domestic market. As a state-controlled company, some of Petrobras' commercial strategies require energy ministry authorization. Petrobras operates three regasification terminals in Brazil, which were built in a time when the country was seeing high economic growth rates and natural gas consumption was strong.
Canceled LNG Project Casts Shadow over Canada's Biggest Shale Play
Petronas' decision to cancel its Pacific NorthWest LNG project is a blow to the growth outlook for Canada's largest shale play, eliminating a potentially huge source of future gas demand. Gas from the Montney shale play in western Canada would have supplied the C$36 billion ($28.7 billion) project in northern British Columbia. The project, majority-owned by Malaysia's Petronas, would then have shipped 12 megatonnes per year of liquefied natural gas to Asia. Instead, state-owned Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) subsidiary…
Ichthys LNG Output Expected to Start by Year-end
Japan's biggest oil and gas explorer Inpex Corp expects gas production from the seabed for its offshore Ichthys liquefied natural gas (LNG) project to start from around the end of the year, a senior company executive said on Friday. Inpex in late April delayed the Ichthys start to the first quarter of next year, citing delays in the installation of offshore production facilities. The floating production, storage and offloading unit for the project finally set sail last month to the Ichthys gas-condensate field from Okpo, South Korea, and there is no further delay, Inpex's Senior Managing Executive Officer Masahiro Murayama said.
Novatek Expects 50 pct Capex Growth in 2018, 2019
Russia's largest non-state gas producer Novatek expects capital expenditure to rise by around 50 percent in 2018 and 2019, as it pushes ahead with plans to increase liquefied natural gas production, a company official said on Thursday. Novatek Chief Financial Officer Mark Gyetvay said on a conference call that capital expenditure is seen rising to 60 billion roubles ($1 billion) per year in 2018 and 2019 from 40 billion roubles this year. Novatek is aiming to produce as much LNG as the world's biggest exporter Qatar and is drawing up plans to build a second plant, known as Arctic LNG 2, on the Gydan Peninsula that juts into the Kara Sea.
African LNG Exports to Get Boost from Offshore Projects
Cameroon plans to begin exporting liquefied natural gas later this year using a newly designed offshore plant that analysts say could slash production costs and unlock African reserves not previously considered economically viable. West and Central Africa's Gulf of Guinea has seen a wave of new oil and gas exploration, particularly since Tullow Oil discovered Ghana's huge Jubilee gas field in 2007. But the cost of pipelines and onshore liquefaction facilities means that relatively few gas finds have been developed. However…
Wison Delivers FLNG Barge
Wison Offshore & Marine (“Wison”) has announced that the company has completed the final delivery for the world’s first barge-based floating natural gas liquefaction and storage facility (Caribbean FLNG). Prior to the delivery, the contracts for project financing provided by Bank of China, Deutsche Bank and supported by China Export & Credit Insurance Corporation have been officially signed, which laid a good foundation for the successful delivery of the project. Wison undertook the Caribbean FLNG project under an engineering, procurement, construction, installation and commissioning (EPCIC) contract with Exmar.
Shell Adjusts to Low Priced Oil, Even as Profits Soar
Shell 'getting fit' to live with oil at $40/bbl -CEO. Royal Dutch Shell is gearing up for a world of "lower forever" oil prices, its Chief Executive Ben van Beurden said on Thursday, after the company's profits tripled in the second quarter. The oil and gas industry has struggled with three years of weak prices while also facing the prospect of oil demand plateauing by the end of the next decade. But Europe's largest energy company was able to boost its profits more than expected, increase cash flow to $12.2 billion and reduce debt thanks to asset sales and as big savings introduced since the oil price collapse kicked in.
Petronas Scraps $29 bln Canada LNG Project
Decision widely expected after long delay, weak prices. Malaysian oil company Petronas has scrapped a proposed C$36 billion ($29 billion) liquefied natural gas (LNG) project in western Canada due to weak prices, in a blow to both its global ambitions and Canada's hopes of becoming a major LNG player. Pacific NorthWest LNG in British Columbia was meant to produce 12 megatonnes per year and spur further development of Canada's largest shale play, but industry observers said the move was widely expected given years of delay.
Saudi Expanded Gasline to Complete by Year End
Saudi Aramco will complete the first phase of an expansion of the main gas pipeline across Saudi Arabia by the end of this year, part of an effort to meet the kingdom's rising gas demand. The Master Gas System (MGS) was built in the mid-1970s to gather and process associated gas from oil wells for domestic industry. The world's top oil exporter is pressing on with gas-related projects to meet demand and save crude for export and refining. The pipeline expansion project will help deliver gas to the western region, including the King Abdullah Economic City and the Rabigh 2 independent power plant.
FSRUs Provide Better Return Than LNG Carriers - Drewry
Despite falling freight rates for floating storage regasification units (FSRUs), investment returns at current asset prices and charter rates are higher compared with standard LNG vessels, according to the latest edition of the LNG Forecaster report published by global shipping consultancy Drewry. The Drewry report said that the global FSRU fleet has grown at a CAGR of 21% over the last five years, and currently there are 24 FSRUs operational with an aggregate LNG import capacity of 82 mtpa. An additional 74 mtpa FSRU import capacity is under construction or in the planning stage.
Petronas Halts Western Canadian LNG Project
Malaysia's state-owned energy company Petronas will not proceed with a proposed C$36 billion ($28.8 billion) liquefied natural gas (LNG) project in western Canada because of weak global prices, the company said on Tuesday. The news is a heavy blow to Canada's ambitions to become a global LNG player. Of more than a dozen projects proposed for the west coast of British Columbia only the C$1.6 billion privately held Woodfibre project has been given the green light by its developers. Pacific NorthWest LNG was meant to produce…
Saipem Looks to Novatek Arctic LNG 2 Participation
Italy's Saipem is likely to get a sub-contractor role in a new project to produce liquefied natural gas (LNG) in the Arctic by Russia's Novatek, one of Novatek's partners said. Novatek, Russia's largest non-state LNG producer, is aiming to produce as much LNG as the world's biggest exporter Qatar and is drawing up plans to build a second plant, known as Arctic LNG 2, on the Gydan Peninsula that juts into the Kara Sea. Production is due to start in 2022-2023. Four sources told Reuters earlier this month that Saipem was expected to be chosen to build offshore platforms for the facility.
Global LNG Deals Set Bullish Tone as Peru Export Halt Tightens Market
Asian spot LNG prices stepped higher this week, shrugging off months of weakness, as Royal Dutch Shell replaced lost output from its Peru plant via spot markets and as a flurry of higher-priced deals surprised traders. Peru's liquefaction plant suspended loadings for several weeks without explanation, exerting strain on Shell, which is the sole exporter of Peruvian LNG and was forced to pick up replacement supply on spot markets. "Shell doesn't want to be exposed so they've been covering their positions, but I'm not sure that deal activity is reflecting end-user demand, which is a more sustainable price indicator," a trading source said.
Qatar Seeks to Open New LNG Markets with Floating Terminals
Qatar Gas Transport Company and Norwegian shipping business Hoegh LNG have embarked on a joint project to open new markets for Qatar to sell its liquefied natural gas (LNG) via floating import terminals. Hoegh LNG, a developer of floating LNG import terminals, expects to start work on the import terminal project in a matter of months, CEO Sveinung Stohle told Reuters. Stohle said Hoegh LNG and Qatar Gas Transport Company, which operates a large fleet of LNG tankers, are evaluating countries in which they could establish a floating terminal, naming South America and south-east Asia as attractive prospects.
Nakilat, Höegh LNG Ink MoU on FSRU project
Nakilat signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Höegh LNG, exploring collaboration for Floating Storage and Regasification Unit (FSRU) business as part of its diversification strategy for opportunities and solutions to delivering LNG to the global markets, with FSRU being a leading-edge technology for the liquefied natural gas (LNG) market. Essentially a floating LNG import terminal, this technology has become a strategic solution for countries without LNG receiving terminal infrastructure, enabling better accessibility of clean energy.
Naftogaz to Sign Gas Deals with Vattenfall, Trafigura
Ukraine's Naftogaz plans to sign natural gas purchase agreements with Trafigura Trading (Europe) Sarl and Vattenfall Energy Trading GmbH as it expands supply from Europe. Kiev has looked to diversify away from Russian energy imports since Russia's annexation of Crimea in 2014. Naftogaz plans to sign an framework agreement with Vattenfall which will allow it to buy gas worth up to 105.9 billion hryvnias ($4.1 billion), a July 17 regulatory filing showed. Naftogaz will be able to buy gas worth up to 100.9 billion hryvnias under a similar deal with Trafigura, the filing showed. Naftogaz's press service declined to disclose details.
Saipem Looks to Novatek's Arctic LNG 2 Project Role
Italian energy contractor Saipem is expected to get a contract to build gravity-based platforms to liquefy natural gas at the Arctic LNG 2 facility, the second project of its kind by Russian gas producer Novatek , four sources said. Aiming to become as big as Qatar by LNG volumes produced, Novatek is drawing up plans to build its second LNG plant which it intends to locate on the Gydan Peninsula that juts into the Kara Sea. Reporting by Katya Golubkova and Denis Pinchuk
Statoil: Norwegian Arctic Gas Find Disappoints
Statoil has made a smaller-than-expected gas find in the Barents Sea near its Snoehvit gas field, the company said on Monday. The find at the Blaamann well is estimated to hold up to 3 billion standard cubic metres of recoverable gas. No oil was found. "We were exploring for oil and this is not the result we were hoping for," Jez Averty, Statoil's head for exploration in Norway and Britain, said in the statement. Statoil has a 50-percent stake in the licence, called PL 849. Its partners are Italy's Eni with 30 percent and Norway's Petoro with 20 percent. Statoil will exploit the gas via existing infrastructure for the Snoehvit field.
Petrobras Oil Output Rises in June
Brazil's Petrobras produced 2.2 million barrels per day of crude oil on average in June, a 0.6 percent increase over the prior month, the state-owned company said on Monday. Natural gas production rose 1.8 percent to 80.3 million cubic meters per day, Petrobras added. Total oil and natural gas production in Brazil reached 2.81 million barrels of oil equivalent per day, the company said. Reporting by Luciano Costa
LNG Prices Low on Oversupply
The Asian market for liquefied natural gas (LNG) remained subdued this week, weighed down by oversupply concerns and as the northern hemisphere exits its high demand summer season. Spot prices for Asian LNG <LNG-AS> were at $5.40 per million British thermal units (mmBtu), down 5 cents from a week ago. That's more than 70 percent below the $20.50 per mmBtu peak from February 2014. "Summer demand had been strong at this level (of mid$5/mmBtu). It's approaching shoulder months so prices are correcting," a Singapore-based LNG trader said. LNG deamnd weakens seasonlly during the shoulder season between the northern hemisphere's summer and winter.
US Natgas Output up in 2017, but Still below 2015 Record
U.S. dry natural gas production in 2017 was forecast to rise to 73.30 billion cubic feet per day (bcfd) from 72.29 bcfd in 2016, according to the Energy Information Administration's (EIA) Short Term Energy Outlook (STEO) on Tuesday. The latest July output projection was unchanged from EIA's forecast in June but falls short of the record high 74.14 bcfd produced on average in 2015. EIA also projected U.S. gas consumption would fall to 72.86 bcfd in 2017 from a record 75.11 bcfd in 2016. The 2016 high was the seventh annual demand record in a row.
Marsol Signs Two-Year OOCEP Contract
Marsol International, a UAE-based global marine solutions provider focused on the offshore oil terminal market and related infrastructure, has signed a two years contract with Oman Oil Company Exploration & Production LLC (OOCEP) for the provision and management of the marine and offshore activities related to the tanker loading, via the single point mooring (SPM) offshore marine terminal including maintenance works, vessels, equipment and manpower. The Musandam gas plant, located on the west coast of the Musandam Peninsula, has a processing capacity of up to 20,000 barrels of crude; 45 million cubic feet of gas and 75 tons of LPG per day.
Stena Drilling Extends Inspection Contract with Sparrows
Sparrows Group has been awarded a three-and-a-half-year extension to its inspection services contract for Stena Drilling’s global fleet of drilling vessels. The contract scope includes carrying out LOLER lifting gear surveys, potential dropped objects surveys, cargo carrying unit (CCU) and non-destructive testing (NDT) inspections as well as rig specific maintenance. As well as an extension to the contract, the scope has also been expanded to cover Stena’s entire fleet of seven vessels, including the Stena Don in Norway.
Qatar LNG Flows Unaffected by Crisis -Shell
Qatari exports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) remain stable amid ongoing tension between the world's biggest LNG exporter and its neighbours, an executive for Royal Dutch Shell said on Monday. "LNG flows remain stable, cargoes are going into the market," said Steve Hill, Executive Vice-President for Gas and Energy Marketing and Trading at Shell, one of the world's biggest LNG traders. "Qatar is a very credible and competent LNG producer," Hill said at an industry event in Istanbul. Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt cut ties with Qatar on June 5, accusing it of backing terrorism. Doha has denied the allegations.