Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Crude Processing News

Refineries around Asia Join Chinese Peers in Increasing Production

Refinery - Image by TTstudio/AdobeStock

Refineries from India to South Korea are expected to increase output from June, joining their Chinese counterparts as the easing of lockdown measures boosts demand for oil products, industry executives said.The average operating rate for refineries in Asia is expected to rise to 75.5% and 82.2% in the third and fourth quarters, respectively, from 72.4% in the second quarter out of total capacity of about 35 million barrels per day, according to energy consultancy FGE.Refineries in countries such as India…

Third Iranian Fuel Cargo Approaches Venezuela

File photo of oil tanker Petunia (© Mahdi Elhaki / MarineTraffic.com)

The third cargo of an Iranian tanker flotilla carrying fuel for gasoline-thirsty Venezuela on Tuesday reached the nation's exclusive economic zone as the previous two were discharging at state run PDVSA's ports, according to Refinitiv Eikon data.The Iran-flagged tanker Petunia crossed the Caribbean Sea earlier on Tuesday, following the route taken in recent days by vessels Fortune and Forest.The Fortune was welcomed on Monday at PDVSA's El Palito refinery by Venezuela's oil minister…

Iranian Tanker Docks in Venezuela

Iranian tanker Fortune file photo (© Rutger Hofma / MarineTraffic.com)

The first of five Iranian tankers carrying fuel to Venezuela has moored at a port serving the El Palito refinery, the oil minister said on Monday, and Refinitiv Eikon data showed a second vessel had entered its waters.Iran is providing Venezuela with 1.53 million barrels of gasoline and refining components in a move criticized by U.S. authorities as both countries are under U.S. sanctions, according to the governments, sources and calculations by TankerTrackers.com.Refinitiv…

India's April Crude Processing in Biggest Drop Since 2003

Illustration; Credit: TTstudio / Adobestock

India's crude oil processing in April slumped by 28.8% from a year earlier, its biggest drop since at least 2003, as a nationwide lockdown weighed on fuel demand and forced refiners to cut production.Refiners processed about 14.75 million tonnes or 3.60 million barrels per day (bpd) of oil last month, government data showed.The lockdown and travel curbs aimed at stemming spread of COVID-19 since March 25 forced people to stay home, cutting India's fuel…

India's Reliance Cuts Pay of Oil & Gas Division's Execs

Illustration; Offshore rigs in India - Image by Jevgenijs/AdobeStock

India's Reliance Industries has cut the pay of some top oil-and-gas division employees by up to 50%, according to six sources and a letter seen by Reuters, as it battles lower profitability because of the coronavirus epidemic.Reliance, headed by India's richest man, Mukesh Ambani, has decided that employees earning more than 1.5 million rupees ($20,000) a year will face a 10% salary cut, while the cuts will be 30% to 50% for senior executives, the sources said.The pay cuts…

The Numbers Tell the Story of Oil Industry Crisis

© Kalyakan/AdobeStock

Global oil producers and refiners are struggling with a series of unprecedented dislocations as the simultaneous epidemic and volume war between Saudi Arabia and Russia rip through every element of the supply chain.Some idea of the extraordinary speed and scale of the disruptions was evident in the "Weekly Petroleum Status Report" published by the U.S. Energy Information Administration on Wednesday.The United States is the world's largest oil consumer and producer…

Oil Prices Fall as Demand Woes Eclipse U.S. Stimulus

Illustration by spyrakot - AdobeStock

Oil prices slipped into negative territory on Wednesday as faltering fuel demand from the spread of the coronavirus outweighed a massive pending U.S. economic stimulus package.Brent crude was down 45 cents, or 1.66%, at $26.70 per barrel at 1029 GMT after earlier rising to a high of $28.29.U.S. crude was down 10 cents, or 0.42%, at $23.91 after a high of $25.24 per barrel.U.S. senators and Trump administration officials have reached an agreement on the $2 trillion stimulus bill which is expected to be passed through Congress later on Wednesday.Still…

U.S. Refiners Control Gasoline, Diesel Oversupply

File Image: AdobeStock / © Sharrif Chi'lah

U.S. refiners have cut seasonal crude processing sharply since the start of the second quarter, averting a potential oversupply of gasoline and distillates, but worsening the build up of crude stocks.U.S. refiners have processed an average 16.64 million barrels per day (bpd) of crude since the start of the year compared with 16.94 million bpd at the same point in 2018 (https://tmsnrt.rs/2N9ziVH).Some of the loss can be attributed to the destruction of the 335…

India's Oil Imports at 3-year Low

© Björn Wylezich / Adobe Stock

India's oil imports fell to their lowest in more than three years in September to 3.82 million barrels per day (bpd), data obtained from industry and shipping sources showed, as some refiners cut purchases due to shutdowns for maintenance and fuel upgrades.Last month, Saudi Arabia replaced Iraq as top oil supplier to India after a gap of about 13 months, the data showed.September oil imports, which dropped below 4 million bpd for the first time since June 2016…

Oil Soars 10%

© viking75 / Adobe Stock

Oil futures jumped 10% on Monday after an attack on Saudi Arabian crude oil processing facilities over the weekend sliced the kingdom's production in half and threatened to hamper shipments from the world's largest crude exporter.Prices initially surged more than 20% after the open on Sunday evening, with Brent crude posting its biggest intraday gain since the 1990-1991 Gulf crisis, before pulling back as various nations have said they would tap emergency…

Asia: Pertamina, Petronas Join Forces

Image: Petronas

Indonesian state-owned energy company PT Pertamina and Petroliam Nasional Berhad (Petronas) of Malaysia have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to develop oil and gas business – upstream and downstream, not only in Indonesia or Malaysia but also in other countries.As per MoU, Pertamina will swap crude produced in its Malaysian fields of Kikeh, Kimanis and Kidurong with crude from Petronas' Indonesian fields of Jabung and Ketapang, said a Reuters report quoting Pertamina sources.Meanwhile…

Pemex Shrugs off Losses; Eyes New Oilfields

file Image: AdobeStock / © Mike Mareen

Mexico's national oil company Pemex narrowed its multibillion-dollar losses last year, executives said on Wednesday, as it seeks to fast-track the development of 20 new fields this year in a bid to bring new streams of crude online.Long a source of Mexican pride and a potent political symbol, the state-owned company faces an increasingly uncertain future as oil output slides, leaving it with a $7.6 billion loss in 2018."In 2019, Pemex's main objective is to stabilize crude oil production…

Oil Refiners Face Rollercoaster Ride as Fuel Margins Seesaw

© Zhu Difeng / Adobe Stock

Oil product margins have been tossed around on a wild rollercoaster ride in October, as factors like impending Iran sanctions, the China-U.S. trade war and upcoming shipping regulations yank fuel profits up, down and back again.Some profit margins, known as crack spreads in the industry, including for Asian fuel oil and gasoil have boomed, while others, such as Asian and European gasoline cracks, have plunged.Crack spreads are the difference between the price of crude oil and the price of the products such as diesel and gasoline refined from it.

U.S. Energy Chief Applauds Mexico's Plan to End Fuel Imports

File Image: Adobestock / © Sharrif che'lah

U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry praised the goal set out by Mexico's incoming president to end massive gasoline and diesel imports, nearly all of which come from the United States, as a measure that will boost prosperity in its southern neighbor.During a visit on Wednesday to the Mexican capital in which he met with both current officials as well as key advisers to President-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, Perry brushed off concerns that U.S. refiners stand to lose their biggest foreign market."It's a good goal for Mexico.

Mexico's Obrador Pledges More Than $11 Bln for Refineries

© TTStudio / Adobe Stock

Mexican President-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said on Monday his administration will invest more than $11 billion to boost refining capacity in order to curb growing fuel imports.Lopez Obrador, who will take office on Dec. 1, told reporters his government plans to invest $2.6 billion to modernize existing domestic refineries owned and operated by national oil company Pemex, and spend another $8.4 billion to build a new one within three years.The…

Crude Processing in Mexico Up 9% -Pemex CEO

Carlos Trevino (Photo: PEMEX)

Mexican national oil company Pemex is currently processing about 9 percent more crude oil at its domestic refineries than it did in 2017, Chief Executive Officer Carlos Trevino said on Tuesday.Trevino told reporters that current processing levels stand at about 834,000 barrels per day (bpd), which compares to crude processing of about 767,000 bpd last year, according to Pemex data.The executive, who took the reins of the state-run company in November, said he expects processing levels to reach about 900,000 bpd once maintenance plans at two facilities are com

Hedge Funds Now Taking Profits After Oil Rally

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Gear STD)

Hedge fund managers have started to take profits from the big rise in crude oil and refined products prices since June now the rally has lost momentum and inventories are showing signs of stabilising. Portfolio managers cut their combined net long position in the five major futures and options contracts linked to petroleum prices by the equivalent of 34 million barrels in the week to Dec. Net long positions were reduced to 1,120 million barrels, from the previous week’s record of 1…

Crude Oil Rally Stalls as Fuel Prices Soften

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Leeylutung)

Surging prices for refined products, especially distillate fuel oil, led crude prices higher between June and November, but now fuels are slipping and putting crude under pressure. Gross refining margins for producing distillate fuel oil from U.S. crude rose from $14 per barrel in June to more than $25 per barrel in the middle of November. The U.S. distillate market started the year in substantial oversupply, with inventories well above the long-term average (http://tmsnrt.rs/2joA5Cw).

Oil Firms as Gulf Refineries Restart

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Sharrif Che'Lah)

Hurricane Harvey's impact on oil industry slowly fading. Brent oil prices firmed on Thursday, hovering near 3-1/2-month highs as U.S. refiners restarting after Tropical Storm Harvey increased their crude processing and the U.S. dollar declined. Brent crude futures were up 28 cents at $54.48 a barrel by 1143 GMT, close to their highest since May 25. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures eased by 11 cents to $49.05 a barrel, near a four-week high. U.S.

Fire Out at Dalian PetroChina Refinery

A fire that broke out on Thursday at state oil major PetroChina's plant in northeastern China, one of the country's largest refineries, has been put out with no reported casualties, state media reported. The fire came just two months after the Dalian refinery finished a planned major maintenance. More than 600 firefighters extinguished the blaze at the plant's 1.4 million-tonnes-per-annum catalytic cracker just after 9:00 p.m. (1300 GMT), and stayed on the scene to make sure equipment at the refinery remained cool, state broadcaster CCTV said on Friday.