Eni Staying in Cyprus Despite Island's Standoff with Turkey
Italy's Eni will not relinquish its interests in Cyprus, its CEO said on Wednesday, as an uneasy standoff between Turkey and the Mediterranean island lingered over offshore hydrocarbons resources.The Italian state-controlled energy giant had to abandon a scheduled drill for oil and gas south of Cyprus in February because of Turkish military exercises. The broader region has yielded some of the largest…
Kuwait Energy Starts Producing Natural Gas in Southern Iraq
Kuwait Energy PLC <IPO-KEC.L> started producing natural gas from Siba on Wednesday, the first gas field to be brought on stream in the south of Iraq, an Iraqi oil executive told Reuters.Siba began producing gas at an initial rate of 25 million cubic feet a day (mcf/d), which should rise gradually to 100 mcf/d by the end of the year, said Kareem Abd Oda, the director general of the joint venture established by Iraq and Kuwait Energy to develop the field.Siba…
Subsea 7: Offer Could Change if McDermott Cooperates
Norwegian offshore oil services firm Subsea 7 is open to potentially sweetening its $2 billion offer for McDermott if the U.S. company would work with it to identify additional benefits of a deal, Subsea said on Wednesday. The Norwegian firm's comments come a week before McDermott's shareholders vote on a planned combination with Chicago Bridge and Iron (CB&I), which McDermott's board has recommended…
Ampelmann Opens Hamburg Office
Ampelmann has opened its first office in Germany, in response to growing business in the offshore wind sector. The new base, located in Hamburg, will be led by Tim Börner, who has been appointed as Business Development Manager Offshore Wind Germany for Ampelmann. Mr Börner joins the company from Global Renewables Ship Brokers GmbH where he most recently held the role of Offshore Shipbroker for more than five years, focusing on the offshore wind market.
Fuel Shortage Hits Sudan as Dollar Crisis Hampers Imports
Vehicles queued for hours at gas stations in Sudan's capital on Tuesday as a fuel shortage caused by the government's difficulty in importing it due to a foreign currency crisis hit home.Once an exporter of oil, Sudan was forced to begin importing it after the south seceded in 2011, taking with it three-quarters of what had been the country's oil output and its main source of foreign currency."I have been waiting at the gas station from last night until midday today.
DEKRA Wins Six-figure Contract in Australia
DEKRA Organizational Reliability, consultancy in behavioral change, has been awarded a 12-month contract worth $1 million AUSD, providing leadership training and coaching to ConocoPhillips’ Australia West operation.The Aberdeen-based consultancy, formerly known as Optimus Seventh Generation which specializes in working within high hazard industries, has been working on an ongoing basis with the operator’s UK-based function since 2016.
Lebanon Prepares for Second Offshore Oil and Gas Licensing Round
GE to Trial World’s Largest Wind Turbine in UK
U.S. conglomerate General Electric will test the world's largest wind turbine in a facility in northeast England, it said on Tuesday. GE Renewable Energy, the renewable arm of the U.S. firm, and the British government-funded Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult signed a five-year agreement to test GE's Haliade-X 12 megawatt (MW) turbine in Blyth, Northumberland. "This is an important agreement because…
Borr Drilling Cuts Jobs in Texas
Offshore rig operator Borr Drilling cut 66 jobs in Texas at the end of March, according to a state regulatory notice, as the company prepared to close on its purchase of Paragon Offshore.The filing with the Texas Workforce Commission did not provide a reason for the layoffs.A Borr representative was not immediately available for comment.Borr, based in Oslo, Norway, offered to buy rival Paragon Offshore for $232.5 million in February and Paragon shareholders approved the deal on March 27.
Agreement Paves Way for South African Offshore Supply Base
South Africa’s first dedicated and customized facility supporting offshore oil and gas activities will be introduced at the Port of Saldanha. This follows the conclusion of an agreement between Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) and Saldehco Pty Ltd, which was signed off at an official ceremony at the port on Monday, 23 April 2018.Saldehco is a privately owned South African company, comprising principal shareholder HARPS Holdings Pte Limited and local partner Semona Pty Limited.
Subsea 7 Makes Hostile Bid for McDermott
Offshore oil services firm Subsea 7 has made an unsolicited offer worth about $2 billion for U.S. rival McDermott, potentially breaking up the U.S. company's agreed deal with onshore engineering firm Chicago Bridge & Iron (CB&I).The deal could make Oslo-listed Subsea 7 the market leader in supplying and installing subsea equipment for oil and gas firms with a combined market share of 24 percent, followed by TechnipFMC with 20 percent and Saipem with 15 percent…
Attollo Bags Multimillion Jack Up Deals
Attollo Offshore has heralded Q2 by signing multiple multi-million dollar jack up contracts within the oil and gas and renewable energy sectors. The contracts will see the Aberdeen-based company - renowned for its smarter operations of the assets required for late field life, decommissioning, rig-less well intervention, plug and abandonment and offshore wind projects - provide propelled and non-propelled accommodation jack up rigs to operators until the end of 2018.
McTiernan Appointed Non-Executive Chairman, Hurricane Energy
Steven McTiernan has been appointed as Non-Executive Chairman of the board of directors of Hurricane Energy plc, effective May 1, 2018. Dr. David Jenkins, who has acted as Interim Chairman of the Board since November 2017, will return to his previous role as Senior Independent Director on this date.Steven McTiernan has over 45 years of oil and gas industry and investment banking experience. He was a non-executive director of Tullow Oil plc for eleven years until December 2012…
MaRINET2 Advances Renewable Energy Research
The MaRINET2 project has awarded €1.1 million in support to 32 offshore renewable technology developers to test at its network of world-leading research facilities. This support will accelerate the next generation of energy technologies toward the marketplace, and help maintain Europe’s global leadership in renewable energy research.€1.1 million of funding was awarded to 32 innovation technology developers from 17 countries, following a second competitive call for applications.
US Drillers Add Oil Rigs for Third Consecutive Week
U.S. energy companies added oil rigs for a third week in a row as energy firms follow through on plans to spend more on drilling this year with crude prices near three-year highs.Drillers added five oil rigs in the week to April 20, bringing the total count to 820, the highest level since March 2015, General Electric Co's Baker Hughes energy services firm said in its closely followed report…
Newbuild Kreuz Challenger Mobilized for Brunei Shell Contract
Subsea services company Kreuz Subsea has mobilized the recently delivered newbuild dive support vessel, Kreuz Challenger, as part of its seven-year contract with Brunei Shell Petroleum Company Sdn. Bhd. (BSP).The contract, which runs until 2022, includes supporting BSP with inspection, repair and maintenance services to be carried out on offshore oil and gas structures in Negara Brunei Darussalam's territorial waters.Typically located in water depths of up to 80 meters…
Odfjell Drilling to Expand Fleet
Offshore rig firm Odfjell Drilling plans to expand its floating rig fleet to between six and 10 from four now, it said on Friday, the latest sign of recovery in the energy industry.After cuts in exploration spending following an oil price plunge that began in 2014, energy firms are now hiring rigs as crude prices have recovered some ground.Odfjell raised $175 million via a new share issue on Thursday to help buy semi-submersible Stena Midmax Rig from Samsung Heavy Industries for $505 million.
Semco Maritime Generated Positive Operating Results in 2017
Semco Maritime’s revenue shrunk to DKK 1,408 million in 2017 against DKK 1,598 million in 2016 as the offshore services provider observed continued price pressure and market hesitancy amid postponed projects and growing competition across its business areas.“Even though oil and gas prices increased during the year, the majority of 2017 was characterized by continued low activity and tough competition in the oil and gas industry.
Belgium to Double Offshore Wind Energy Capacity
Belgium will double the area of its North Sea waters made available to offshore wind parks after 2020, the government announced on Friday, as part of its exit strategy from nuclear power. The country has four offshore wind parks that produce 871 megawatts of power and wants to increase that capacity to 2.2 gigawatts by 2020 and to 4 gigawatts by 2030. After 2020, the government plans to designate a new, 221-square-kilometre (85 square miles) area near French waters.
Golar LNG Enters Preliminary Deal for BP FLNG
Golar LNG Limited announced it has entered into a Preliminary Agreement and exchanged Heads of Terms (HoT) for an FLNG vessel for phase 1A of the Greater Tortue / Ahmeyin field, located offshore Mauritania and Senegal.The Preliminary Agreement with BP Mauritania Investments Ltd and BP Senegal Investments Ltd creates obligations on Golar to progress FEED work and be ready for a vessel conversion from July 1…
Trump Administration Mulls Opening Alaska Refuge to Drilling
The Trump administration this week will begin the environmental review process for oil and gas drilling on a section of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, a region in northern Alaska rich in crude but prized by conservationists.In a notice from the U.S. Department of the Interior seen by Reuters, which the agency will post on Friday, it says it will hold meetings in five Alaskan towns where the public can speak about drilling in the refuge.
To Frack or Not to Frack? Australia's NatGas Dilemma
The decision by the government of Australia's Northern Territory government to allow the resumption of fracking for natural gas will do little to immediately solve the country's energy woes, but will likely sharpen political battle lines. The territory's government said on April 17 that it has lifted a near two-year moratorium on hydraulic fracturing, known as fracking, accepting the recommendations of its own commission of inquiry into the practice.
ScanReach's In: New Safety at Sea Tech
Norwegian start-up technology firm ScanReach is set to redefine safety standards at sea with In:Range, a unique system capable of locating anyone on a vessel or offshore installation in real time. The plug and play technology is simple, easy to install, low cost and, according to the team behind it, could save countless lives at sea. With In:Range ScanReach has solved a problem nobody else has. The…
Post-Bankruptcy, Seadrill Eyes Closer Oil Service Ties
Offshore oil driller Seadrill aims to expand relations with Schlumberger, the world's largest oil services firm, and other suppliers to the global oil and gas industry, its chief executive told Reuters on Wednesday. Seadrill plans to emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings in late June or early July, following a U.S. court's approval on Tuesday of its multi-billion dollar debt restructuring plan, CEO Anton Dibowitz said.
US Court Approves Seadrill's Bankruptcy Exit Plan
A U.S. judge said on Tuesday he would approve Seadrill Ltd's plan to exit its Chapter 11 bankruptcy, in which the global offshore oil and gas drilling company would shed billions of dollars of debt and raise $1 billion in new investment. U.S. Bankruptcy Judge David Jones in Houston overruled two minor objections to the reorganization plan during a 90-minute hearing. The plan extends maturities on more…
Flintstone Sets Its Sights on Floating Wind
Flintstone Technology Ltd said it plans to diversify its mooring operations to help drive down costs for the offshore floating wind industry.The company has developed a set of mooring system solutions to match specific project requirements in oil and gas and marine renewable energy.With decades of experience in the oil and gas industry, this knowledge combined with the mooring solutions, is transferable…
All Turbines Linked to Grid at Rampion Offshore Wind Farm
All 116 turbines at top German utility E.ON's Rampion offshore wind farm in Britain are now able to generate electricity and are delivering power to the grid, the company said on Tuesday.The 400-megawatt project is being built off the coast of Sussex in southeast England by E.ON, UK Green Investment Rampion Ltd and Canadian energy infrastructure company Enbridge."Over the coming months work will continue both on and offshore…
Partners Aim to Improve Riser Performance and Efficiency
Trelleborg said its offshore operation has signed a supply and license agreement with Reel Power Oil and Gas to collaboratively develop and market a new Vortex Induced Vibration (VIV) suppression system aimed at improving riser performance and efficiency in demanding offshore environments.“We strive to push the limits of the oil and gas industry to improve the performance and competitiveness of our customers.
Royal Dutch Shell to Resume Deepwater Exploration off Egypt
Royal Dutch Shell said it will resume deep-water exploration for oil and gas off Egypt's Mediterranean coast, Executive Vice President Sami Iskander told a news conference on Tuesday. Egypt is looking to production from recently discovered fields to halt energy imports by 2019. A petroleum ministry official said last month that new production at Shell's West Nile Delta field 9B is expected to reach 350-400 million cubic feet per day by 2019.
OutSmart, Kongsberg Join Forces on Wind Energy
Independent wind asset operations management specialist OutSmart BV has selected Kongsberg Digital AS to provide an integrated management system on the innovative Kognifai digital platform and ecosystem. The sophisticated digital solution will be used to manage OutSmart’s extensive onshore and offshore wind turbine portfolio. OutSmart provides services to wind farm owners, fund managers, and wind project companies in Northwestern Europe to maximize the revenues of their wind assets.
ConocoPhillips' Alaskan Venture a Success
ConocoPhillips announced it has concluded its 2018 winter exploration and appraisal program in Alaska. The company’s original plan was to drill five wells on the Western North Slope comprising two appraisal wells of the Willow Discovery announced in January 2017, plus three exploration wells. Due to improved drilling efficiencies, the company was able to drill a total of six wells, including an additional Willow appraisal well.
Thompson takes over from Founder Heavey, Tullow Oil
Tullow Oil plc (Tullow) announced the appointment of Dorothy Thompson as independent non-executive Director and Chair-designate of Tullow with effect from the conclusion of the Group’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) on 25 April 2018. It is anticipated Thompson will succeed Aidan Heavey, Tullow’s current Chairman and Founder, as Chair at the conclusion of the Board meeting scheduled for 20 July 2018. Aidan will retire from the Board at the same time.
UAE's Stanford Marine in Talks to Restructure $325 mln in Debt
Stanford Marine Group <IPO-SFMG.L>, majority owned by a fund managed by private equity firm Abraaj Group, is in talks with banks to restructure a $325 million Islamic loan, banking sources said. The Dubai-based oil and gas services firm, which has struggled as a result of a downturn in the hydrocarbons market, has asked banks to consider extending the maturity of its debt and restructuring repayments, the sources said.
Chevron Greenlights Gorgon LNG Expansion
Chevron Corp will proceed with the second stage of its giant Gorgon liquefied natural gas (LNG) export plant off the northwest coast of Western Australia, the company said on Saturday.Chevron and its joint venture partners plan to sink 11 new wells in the Gorgon and Jansz-Io fields and build offshore pipelines and subsea structures to pipe the gas to the nearby 15.6 million tonne a year LNG plant on…
BSEE Approves Arctic Offshore Suspension Requests
The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) approved suspensions of operations Tuesday in response to requests from the Arctic Slope Regional Corporation Exploration, LLC (AEX) related to AEX’s 20-lease Taktuk Unit, and one additional lease, in the Beaufort Sea. The leases, which are located in the Camden Bay area, approximately 8-25 miles off of the northern shore of the Alaska North Slope, were obtained by AEX from Shell in late 2016.
Statoil Eyes Future Projects with Pemex
Norway's Statoil will evaluate new offshore projects in Mexico, including potential tie-ups with state oil company Pemex, the firm's top executive said, adding that a first deepwater well in an existing Gulf project will likely be drilled next year. Statoil is focused mostly on future deepwater opportunities in Mexico but does not rule out others, CEO Eldar Saetre said in an interview late on Thursday.
Tanzania Seeks Consultancy Service Provider for Delayed LNG Project
Tanzania has invited bids for consultancy services to help the government conclude negotiations with a group of international oil firms on a deal for the construction of a proposed liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant. Tanzania boasts estimated recoverable reserves of over 57 trillion cubic feet (tcf) of natural gas. Construction of an LNG export terminal has however been held up by regulatory delays.
Kenya's National Oil, Schlumberger Ink Field Development Deal
Kenya's National Oil Corporation and U.S. oil services company Schlumberger have agreed to finalise a field development plan on behalf of the government for oil blocks in the northwest of the country. The East African nation discovered commercial oil reserves in its Lokichar basin in 2012. National Oil said in a statement seen by Reuters on Friday that the agreement with Schlumberger would create a development blueprint for the field in the next year.
OPEC Switches Focus From Inventories to Investment
OPEC appears to be reformulating its target in terms of upstream investment rather than oil inventories, according to an analysis of recent statements made by ministers from member countries. “There is no such thing as a target price by Saudi Arabia,” the kingdom’s energy minister, Khalid al-Falih, told reporters on Wednesday (“Saudi Arabia happy with oil market, won’t let another glut form”, Reuters, April 11). “We’re seeing (production in) many regions declining.
Fire in Sauna Shuts World's Northernmost Oilfield
The world's northernmost oilfield was shut on Friday when a fire broke out in a sauna in the oil platform's living quarters, Eni, the Italian oil company that operates the field, said. The Arctic Goliat field is in the Barents Sea about 88 kilometers off the coast of Norway and inside the Arctic Circle. The platform has floating production, storage and offloading facilities and can produce close to 100,000 barrels of crude per day.
Gellert elected Chairman, NOIA
The National Ocean Industries Association (NOIA) Board of Directors has elected John Gellert as Chairman and Richard Clark as Vice Chairman for the upcoming 2018-2019 term. Gellert and Clark assumed their positions at the NOIA Annual Meeting today in Washington, D.C. NOIA President Randall Luthi said, “John and Richard come into their roles at a time when the offshore industry is starting a new chapter.
EnVen bags NOIA Safety in Seas Culture of Safety Award
The National Ocean Industries Association (NOIA) presented EnVen Energy Corporation with the 2018 NOIA Safety in Seas (SIS) Culture of Safety Award today during the association’s annual meeting in Washington, DC. EnVen Energy won the Culture of Safety Award in recognition of its remarkable safety culture transformation between 2013 and 2017. David Carmony, Chief Operations Officer for EnVen Energy accepted the award.“EnVen is honored to receive this prestigious safety award from NOIA…
Fieldwood Hungry for US Offshore Output
The Chief Executive of offshore oil and gas driller Fieldwood Energy LLC, Matt McCarroll, says he is not scared of the hurricanes, geological risks and costs that keep some oil companies out of the Gulf of Mexico. Instead, he is doubling down. The private equity-backed company - already the largest operator on the U.S. outer continental shelf - announced on Thursday it is closing a $480 million acquisition of Noble Energy’s assets in the Gulf of Mexico that will add 25…
Siemens Gamesa Targets Bigger Markets
Siemens Gamesa, the world's second-largest wind turbine maker, said it was seeking to bolster growth by targeting markets in Asia, Latin America and Australia."We have certain markets where we see some growth going forward and India is certainly one of those. The Asian region is an upcoming market where we still can create some market share," Chief Executive Officer Markus Tacke told Reuters in a phone interview on Thursday."Asia…
Petrobras, BP Reinforce Partnership
Petrobras chief executive officer, Pedro Parente, and BP chief executive officer, Robert Dudley, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to complement and reaffirm the commitments contained in the Letter of Intent (LOI), signed by the companies in October 2017. The MOU was signed in London in order to confirm the intention of the parties to combine efforts to discuss and negotiate investment opportunities in the oil and gas chain…
Maersk Establishes Decomissioning Company
A 50/50 joint venture (JV) between Maersk Drilling and Maersk Supply Service will provide decommissioning services to oil and gas operators. After decades of production, an increasing amount of offshore oil and gas fields are approaching the end of their economic life. In the North Sea alone, more than 400 fields are expected to cease production by 2026 at an estimated cost of $56 billion. Globally, more than 700 fields are expected to require decommissioning.
Ghana to Launch First Exploration Licensing Round in Q4 2018
Ghana will launch its first exploration licensing round in the last quarter of this year offering about six offshore blocks, deputy energy minister Mohamed Amin Adam said. Ghana currently produces 200,000 barrels of oil per day (bpd), led by its flagship Jubilee field which produces about 100,000 bpd, he said. The west African nation, which became a significant oil producer in 2010 when it began pumping from the offshore Jubilee field, is keen to unlock its vast oil and gas resources.
France to Decide on Offshore Wind in Coming Days
The French government will decide on the future of its planned offshore wind parks in the coming days, renewable energy lobby SER said in a statement. Last month, the French senate rejected a government proposal to renegotiate and possibly cancel projects to generate a combined 3,000 megawatts of offshore wind power on six sites on France's west coast awarded in 2012 and 2014. The government is still looking at ways to reduce the cost of the projects…
Total Snaps up GoM Assets
French oil major Total said it had bought several assets in the Gulf of Mexico for around $300 million, as part of the Cobalt International Energy company’s bankruptcy auction sale. Total said it was buying a 20 percent stake in the North Platte asset. Following this move, Total will have a 60 percent overall stake in North Platte, with Statoil holding the remaining 40 percent. Total also bought a further 20 percent stake in the Anchor discovery…
Norway's DOF: OSV Market Improving
The cost of renting offshore supply vessels (OSVs), servicing oil and gas firms, will continue to rise as many ships that were mothballed up during the downturn will not return to the market, the chief executive of Norway's DOF said on Wednesday. A number of offshore vessel companies went bankrupt after oil prices plunged between 2014 and 2016, or were forced to merge with competitors to survive as oil companies cut spending for exploration and new developments.
McDermott Completes Phase 1 of QGEP Atlanta EPS
McDermott International, Inc. has announced it completed the first phase of the deep-water Atlanta Early Production System (EPS), located approximately 115 miles (185 kilometers) offshore southeast of Rio de Janeiro, for independent Brazilian Exploration and Production company Queiroz Galvão Exploração e Produção S.A. (QGEP). McDermott successfully performed the project management, engineering and offshore installation of all subsea hardware…
Aquaterra Energy Installs First CSP Platform for Offshore Trinidad and Tobago
Aquaterra Energy, a global offshore engineering solutions provider, has announced it has completed the delivery of a Sea Swift conductor supported platform (CSP) for DeNovo Energy in the Gulf of Paria, offshore Trinidad and Tobago. This is the first platform of its kind to be installed in the country, and was completed in just ten months. Located in the Iguana field, the Sea Swift was installed from a jack-up rig in 27 meters water depth…
TGS Boosted by Seismic Market Recovery
Q1 revenues rose by 56 pct; shares jump 13 pct. Oslo-listed seismic data provider TGS, a key supplier to the oil industry, reported first-quarter revenues far above forecasts as markets continue to improve, it said on Tuesday, sending its share price surging. Net revenues for the January-March quarter rose by 56 percent year-on-year to $135 million, beating the average $106 million forecast by analysts, according to Thomson Reuters estimates.
Subsea 7 Awarded Contract Offshore Nigeria
Subsea 7 S.A. announced it was awarded a contract by Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited (MPN) for the Production Uplift Pipeline Projects (PUPP) in shallow water, offshore Nigeria. The contract scope includes engineering, construction, transportation, installation and pre-commissioning of 20 kilometres of 24" Corrosion Resistant Alloy (CRA) pipeline between the Idoho Platform and the terminal onshore and of 2 kilometres of 24" CRA pipeline between the Edop and Idoho Platforms…
Philippines Eyes Exploration Deal with China in S.China Sea
The Philippines is looking to seal a pact with China within a few months to jointly explore for oil and gas in a part of the busy South China Sea waterway claimed by both countries, a Philippine official said on Monday. In February, the two countries agreed to set up a special panel to work out how to jointly explore for offshore oil and gas in areas both sides claim, without needing to address the touchy issue of sovereignty.
CNOOC Seeks LNG Cargoes for up to 2022
China National Offshore Oil Corp (CNOOC) is seeking liquefied natural gas (LNG) cargoes for delivery for up to 2022, two trade sources said on Monday. The company has given options for four different delivery time periods in the tender, which will close on April 16 and is valid until April 25, one of the sources said. The options vary with the delivery of the first LNG cargo under the tender to start from the second half of November or December this year.
BP to develop Oman’s Khazzangas Field
BP today announced that, together with its partner the Oman Oil Company Exploration & Production, it has approved the development of Ghazeer, the second phase of the giant Khazzan gas field in Oman. The final investment decision (FID) for Ghazeer follows the successful start-up of Khazzan’s first phase of development in September 2017. This project, which started production ahead of schedule and under budget…
US Rig Count Makes Biggest Jump in 2 Months
U.S. energy companies added oil rigs for the third time in four weeks as crude prices drifted from a three-year high hit earlier this year amid concerns of a trade war between U.S. and China.Drillers added 11 oil rigs in the week to April 6, bringing the total count up to 808, the highest level since March 2015, General Electric Co's Baker Hughes energy services firm said in its closely followed report on Friday.This was the biggest weekly addition in about two months.The U.S.
US Interior Secretary Sees Little Demand for New Offshore Drilling
U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke said on Friday that he sees little demand from oil and gas companies for new offshore drilling leases, which could pose problems for his plan to ramp up output from federal waters.The comments come just three months after Zinke had proposed opening nearly all U.S. ocean coastlines to drilling, in a bid to raise domestic oil and gas production. The plan sparked immediate protests from coastal states…
Petrobras Advances Sale of Shallow-Water Field Rights
State-run oil company Petroleo Brasileiro SA said it had initiated the binding phase of the process to sell exploration, development and production rights related to three shallow-water oil fields in Brazil. In a securities filing on Friday, the company said investors who qualified to bid in the initial phase of the process will receive instructions to carry out due diligence as well as guidelines for sending binding proposals.