Friday, July 19, 2019

Middle East News

Van Oord Completes Foundation for EA1

Photo:  Van Oord

Dutch maritime contracting company Van Oord has installed the last jacket foundation for offshore wind farm East Anglia ONE (EA1) and delivered it to client ScottishPower Renewables.Van Oord was in charge of the transportation and installation of all 102 three-legged foundations for the 714-MW offshore wind project. This is the largest number of three-legged wind turbine foundations ever installed offshore, said a press release from the company.Due to be completed in 2020…

New CEO Guy Takes the Helm at EnerMech

John Guy (Photo: EnerMEch)

Aberdeen-headquartered services company EnerMech announced on Wednesday that John Guy has been appointed as Chief Executive Officer (CEO), succeeding company founder Doug Duguid, who will assume the role of Deputy Chairman.Guy’s appointment as CEO will become effective from August 1, 2019, when Doug Duguid will take on the Deputy Chairman role for a six-month period. The move is part of a planned strategic transition put in place following the acquisition of EnerMech in December 2018 by global investment firm…

Oil at Six-week High

BP, the second-largest oil producer in the US Gulf of Mexico by volume, is shutting all production at its four Gulf platforms, including Na Kika (pictured). (File photo: BP)

Oil prices hit a six-week high on Thursday as oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico were evacuated ahead of a storm, while an incident with a British tanker in the Middle East highlighted tensions in the region.Brent crude futures were up 32 cents at $67.33 a barrel by 1153 GMT. Earlier in the session they hit their highest since May 30 at $67.65, after ending Wednesday up 4.4%.U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures were up 25 cents at $60.68 a barrel, having touched their highest since May 23 at $60.94.

EU Threatens Turkey with Sanctions over Cyprus Drilling

Turkey's Energy Minister Fatih Donmez speaks at a drilling launch event in late 2018. Donmez said the country would continue its offshore drilling exploration activities as part of Turkey's aim to be energy independent. (Photo: Turkey Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources)

The European Union is set to curb contacts and funding for Ankara in retaliation for what it calls Turkey's "illegal" drilling for gas and oil off Cyprus and stands ready to ramp up sanctions further, a draft statement seen by Reuters shows.In trying to take Ankara to task over what the EU sees as Turkish interference with Cyprus' exclusive economic zone, the bloc is walking a thin line, careful not to antagonize an important partner."Despite our best intentions to keep good neighborly relations with Turkey…

Venezuela Sells Oil to Tiny Turkish Firm

© Anatoly Menzhiliy / Adobe Stock

With U.S. sanctions blocking Venezuela from selling oil to the United States, state-owned energy firm PDVSA has turned to several little-known buyers that include a tiny Turkish company with no refineries but ties to President Nicolas Maduro's government, according to internal documents and a PDVSA source.Until recently, some of the world's largest petroleum and refining firms, including U.S. companies Chevron and Valero Energy…

Oil Rises Toward $65

© Pavel Ignatov / Adobe Stock

Oil rose towards $65 a barrel on Tuesday as OPEC supply cuts and Middle East tensions outweighed the U.S.-China trade dispute that has been dragging down the global economy and oil demand.OPEC and its allies led by Russia agreed last week to extend their supply-cutting deal until March 2020. Brent has risen almost 20% in 2019 supported by the pact and also tensions in the Middle East, especially concerns about the row over Iran's nuclear program.Benchmark Brent crude rose 33 cents to $64.44 a barrel by 1211 GMT. U.S.

Floater Sector Active Despite Market Volatility

© Igor Kardasov / Adobe Stock

Activity in the floating production sector has not been slowed by the recent volatility seen across global oil markets, according to a recent report by World Energy Reports (WER).Brent oil, which had reached as high as the mid $70 range earlier this year, fell 17% from mid-May and mid-June on demand growth fears and swelling crude inventory, only to rebound back to current levels in the mid $60 range following several tanker attacks and a drone downing near the Strait of Hormuz.

Shelf Drilling Bags Gulf of Thailand Gig

Chevron Project in Gulf of Thailand. Image: Chevron

Dubai-headquartered offshore drilling contractor Shelf Drilling has secured a contract for the Shelf Drilling Scepter jack-up rig with Chevron Thailand Exploration and Production for operations in the Gulf of Thailand.The contract for the  2008-built  rig is expected to commence in Q1 2020 and run until Q2 2022 and includes a one-year option.David Mullen, Chief Executive Officer, Shelf Drilling, said: “We are pleased to continue our long-standing partnership with Chevron through this award for the Shelf Drilling Scepter.

US Rig Count Climbs

© ronniechua / adobe Stock

U.S. energy firms increased the number of oil rigs operating for the first time in the past three weeks as U.S. crude futures soared around 10% this week.Big energy price declines over the prior couple of months, however, prompted one analyst to cut rig count forecasts for 2019 and 2020.Companies added one oil rig in the week to June 21, bringing the total count to 789, General Electric Co's Baker Hughes energy services firm…

Brent Oil Climbed 5% This Week

© Pavel Ignatov / Adobe Stock

Brent oil rallied above $65 per barrel on Friday and was on track for a 5% gain this week on fears of a U.S. military attack on Iran that would disrupt flows from the Middle East, which provides more than a fifth of the world's oil output.Brent crude was up $0.69, or 1.07%, at $65.14 a barrel at 1210 GMT. The global benchmark jumped 4.3% on Thursday and is on course for its first weekly gain in five weeks.U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude was up 24 cents, or 0.42%, at $57.31 a barrel. The U.S.

Oil Prices Jump 2% After Tanker Attacks

(Photo: Islamic Republic News Agency)

Oil prices settled 2.2% higher on Thursday after attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman stoked concerns of reduced crude trade flows through one of the world's key shipping routes.The attacks near Iran and the Strait of Hormuz reignited worries about an impact to flows from the Middle East if insurance companies begin to reduce coverage for voyages through the region and additional shipping companies suspend new bookings…

Two Tankers Attacked in Gulf of Oman

(Photo:  Islamic Republic News Agency)

Two oil tankers were attacked in the Gulf of Oman on Thursday, leaving one ablaze and both adrift, shipping firms said, driving oil prices as much as 4% higher over worries about Middle East supplies.The Front Altair, carrying petrochemical feedstock, was on fire in waters between Gulf Arab states and Iran after an explosion that a source blamed on a magnetic mine. The Norwegian owner said its crew were safe.A second Japanese-owned tanker was abandoned after being hit by a suspected torpedo, the firm that chartered the ship said.

Europe Invests in African Renewable Energy

Pic: DNV GL

The provider of testing and advisory services to the energy value chain including renewables and energy management, DNV GL has joined European signatories including ABB, EDP Renewables, Enel Green Power, Ge Renewable Energy, Pöyry, Prysmian, PwC, Siemens Gamesa and Vestas."DNV GL has signed a ‘declaration of intent’ to commit its interest and participation to the initiative renewAfrica, aimed at boosting renewable energy investments in Africa…

Mohawk Energy Receives 'Sizeable' Investment

(Photo: Mohawk Energy)

Expandable tubular well solutions specialist Mohawk Energy said it has received an investment from private equity firm Buckthorn Partners to support its domestic and international growth ambitions.The Houston-based company provides expandable solutions in pursuit of well integrity, improved well productivity and recovery. Mohawk Energy has recently completed a number of significant long lateral refrac’s and well integrity installations in the US.

Qatar Awards FEED Contract to McDermott

Image: Qatar Petroleum

Qatar Petroleum said it has awarded the front end engineering and design (FEED) contract for the North Field Expansion Project’s offshore pipelines and topsides facilities to McDermott Middle East Inc.The scope of work awarded includes engineering design for eight unmanned wellhead platform topsides, four 38” trunk lines and four 28” intrafield lines, and is expected to take 12 months to complete.Saad Sherida Al-Kaabi, the Minister of State for Energy Affairs…

SENER Names Álvaro Lorente as MD

Alvaro Lorente. Photo: SENER

Spanish engineering and technology group SENER has appointed Alvaro Lorente, former Operations Manager in the energy division as Managing Director.He graduated in Industrial Engineering from the Pontificia Comillas University (ICAI), majoring in Electrical Engineering, and joined SENER in 1991. Among other posts, he has been head of SENER's Mechanics Section, Operations Manager for Renewables, Power, Oil & Gas and International…

U.S. LPG Gas Exports Up in Q1

Image: Dorian LPG

North American liquefied petroleum gas  (LPG) export capacity is forecast to grow considerably over the next two years, said Dorian LPG.According to the LPG shipping company, bolstered by additional volumes out of Marcus Hook in the northeast U.S. due to the startup of the Mariner East 2 pipeline, U.S. exports reached their highest levels for the first calendar quarter of 2019 in January with over 3 million metric tons of LPG exported during the month.However, significant reductions in U.S.

DNO Completes $400mln Bond Placement

Image: DNO ASA

The Norwegian oil and gas operator focused on the Middle East and the North Sea, DNO ASA said it has completed the private placement of USD 400 million of new, five-year senior unsecured bonds with a coupon rate of 8.375 percent.The bond placement received strong investor demand across international markets and was oversubscribed, said a press release from Norway's oldest oil company. The bond issue is expected to be settled on or about 29 May 2019…

Brent Oil Climbs Toward $73

© Theerapong / Adobe Stock

Oil prices rose on Thursday for a third day running as fears of supply disruption amid heightened tensions in the Middle East overshadowed swelling U.S. crude inventories.Brent crude futures were up $1.03 cents at $72.80 a barrel by 1344 GMT, heading for the biggest weekly rise in about three months.U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were up 83 cents at $62.85.Oil was drawing support from the risk of conflict in the Middle East, with helicopters carrying U.S. staff from the U.S.

Oil Price Risks Rise

Image: Saudi Aramco

Supply disruptions in the Middle East on top of an already tight crude market could send oil prices violently upward, said the energy research firm Rystad Energy.Two Saudi Arabian oil tankers were reportedly attacked off the coast of the United Arab Emirates this weekend, sending crude futures up sharply May 13.Bjørnar Tonhaugen, Head of Oil Market Research at Rystad Energy, says: “In the short term, the perceived risk of supply…