Thursday, April 26, 2018

Kuwait Energy Starts Producing Natural Gas in Southern Iraq

Photo: Kuwait Energy

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…

Fuel Shortage Hits Sudan as Dollar Crisis Hampers Imports

© Janine Dimmer / Adobe Stock

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…

Lebanon Prepares for Second Offshore Oil and Gas Licensing Round

Agreement Paves Way for South African Offshore Supply Base

(left to right – Alan Winde, Minister of Economic Opportunities in the Western Cape; Jeffrey Phang, Managing Director of Saldehco; Eric Hennet, Managing Director of Altus France (back); Sophie Masipa, Chairperson of Saldehco; Siyabonga Gama, Transnet Group Chief Executive; Mlamuli Buthelezi, Transnet Group Chief Operating Officer (back); Shulami Qalinge, Transnet National Ports Authority Chief Executive; and Alderman Marius Koen, Executive Mayor of Saldanha Bay Municipality (Photo: TNPA)

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…

US Drillers Add Oil Rigs for Third Consecutive Week

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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…

Odfjell Drilling to Expand Fleet

(Photo: Odfjell Drilling)

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…

Trump Administration Mulls Opening Alaska Refuge to Drilling

(File photo: USFWS)

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…

To Frack or Not to Frack? Australia's NatGas Dilemma

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / © Shamtor)

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…

Royal Dutch Shell to Resume Deepwater Exploration off Egypt

File Image: Adobestock / © DonvictoriO

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…

ConocoPhillips' Alaskan Venture a Success

The polar adventure-valdez alaska Photo courtesy ConocoPhillips

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.

Thompson takes over from Founder Heavey, Tullow Oil

Appointment of Dorothy Thompson CBE as non-executive Chair of Tullow Oil plc Photo 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…

BSEE Approves Arctic Offshore Suspension Requests

Director Scott Angelle Photo BSEE

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…

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…

Kenya's National Oil, Schlumberger Ink Field Development Deal

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / © Diter)

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.

OPEC Switches Focus From Inventories to Investment

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / © MELCAL)

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…

Gellert elected Chairman, NOIA

NOIA President Randall Luthi Photo 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…

Fieldwood Hungry for US Offshore Output

© eaumstocker / Adobe Stock

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.

Petrobras, BP Reinforce Partnership

Petrobras and BP form Strategic Alliance Photo Petrobras

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…

Ghana to Launch First Exploration Licensing Round in Q4 2018

© DJ / Adobe Stock

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.

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…

Norway's DOF: OSV Market Improving

An offshore OSV underway (CREDIT: BSM)

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…

McDermott Completes Phase 1 of QGEP Atlanta EPS

Photo: McDermott International

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).

TGS Boosted by Seismic Market Recovery

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / © DonvictoriO)

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…

Philippines Eyes Exploration Deal with China in S.China Sea

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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…

BP to develop Oman’s Khazzangas Field

Khazzan Phase 2 Image BP

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.

US Rig Count Makes Biggest Jump in 2 Months

© Roberto Giobbi / Adobe Stock

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…

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…

C-Innovation Secures Subsea Construction Contract with BP

Photo: C-Innovation

C-Innovation, LLC (C-I), an affiliate of Edison Chouest Offshore (ECO) and its family of companies, has secured a three-year contract with BP Exploration & Production, Inc. (BP), the largest energy investor in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico. The contract encompasses subsea construction, inspection…

Mexican Presidential Front-Runner Eyes Pemex Reforms

File Image: an offshore GoM oil platform. (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Mike Mareen)

Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, the leftist leading the race to win Mexico's presidency in July, will root out corruption at Pemex and also aims to slim down the state-owned oil and gas company, his pick for finance minister said on Thursday. In an interview with Reuters, Carlos Urzua, a respected economist trained at the University of Wisconsin-Madison…

Askeladden Seeking its Fortune on Gullfaks

Photo:  Statoil ASA

The new Cat J jackup rig Askeladden started drilling on the Gullfaks field on 26 March, with the goal of providing new production from old wells and exploring to create new value. Askeladden has been bought by the Gullfaks licence to carry out production and exploration drilling on Gullfaks Satellites.

Genoil to Develop Russia's Velikoye Oil Field

Genoil has signed an agreement to attract finances and evaluate technologies to develop oil and gas fields in the Astrakhan Region of Russia. This agreement is with the license holder of this property; JSC Petroleumgas Company commonly known as "AFB". AFB's licenses encompass 700 square kilometers where the Velikoye oil field was discovered.

Vryhof Bags Anchoring Contract with Cooper Energy

Photo: DSM

Deep Sea Mooring (DSM) and Vryhof Anchors, both Vryhof businesses, have secured a contract to provide full-scale mooring and anchoring services to Australian energy company Cooper Energy. The announcement also sees Vryhof businesses secure contracts in Cooper’s main target drilling area - offshore Victoria, Australia - for the first time.

Askeladden seeking its fortune on Gullfaks

Gunnar NakkenGunnar Nakken(Photo: Arne Reidar Mortensen

The new Cat J jackup rig Askeladden started drilling on the Gullfaks field on 26 March, with the goal of providing new production from old wells and exploring to create new value. Askeladden has been bought by the Gullfaks licence to carry out production and exploration drilling on Gullfaks Satellites.

Baker Hughes Explores Sale of Gas Metering Unit

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

Baker Hughes, the oilfield services company controlled by General Electric Co, is exploring a sale of its gas detection and metering business that could be worth around $900 million, people familiar with the matter said on Monday. Oilfield services firms are seeking to tighten their focus to their core operations…

Petrobras Offers Rights in Onshore, Offshore Fields

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

Brazil's state-run oil company Petroleo Brasileiro said on Tuesday it initiated the sale of 50 percent of production and exploration rights in offshore fields Tartaruga Verde and a section of Espadarte, without transfer of operations. Petrobras also said in a separate securities filing it…

Frontera Energy Names New CEO, Doubles Investment in Peru

Photo: Frontera Energy

Canada's Frontera Energy Corp named a new chief executive on Monday, and said it plans to more than double its investment in operations in Colombia and Peru during 2018, to up to $500 million. Frontera will direct between $225 million and $240 million of investment to new wells and maintenance in the two countries, the company said in a statement.

OSV Market Poised for Growth -Report

© J Gray / Adobe Stock

The global offshore support vessel (OSV) market is expected to grow from an estimated $20.06 billion in 2018 to $25.66 billion by 2023, according to a recent report published by MarketsandMarkets. Ongoing offshore activities across the U.S., China, Brazil and the North Sea will help the market to expand at a CAGR of 5.04 percent during the forecast period…

ExxonMobil Wins Eight Deepwater Blocks in Brazil

Photo:  Exxon Mobil Corporation

ExxonMobil has increased its holdings in Brazil’s pre-salt basins after winning eight additional exploration blocks during Brazil’s 15th bid round. The blocks awarded add about 640,000 net acres to the ExxonMobil portfolio. Six of the eight newly awarded blocks will be operated by ExxonMobil.

Arctic: ExxonMobil Exits, Rosneft Goes Ahead

Photo: ExxonMobil

Russian state oil company Rosneft will continue geological explorations in the Arctic offshore zone after ExxonMobil quits the joint projects, reports TASS. The report qouted Natural Resources Minister Sergey Donskoy saying that the Arctic licenses will remain with Rosneft and the company "plans to continue to operate there".

Total announces first gas from Timimoun field, Algeria

Production Starts Up at Timimoun Gas Field in Algeria Image Total

Total announces first gas from the Timimoun field in southwestern Algeria. The production complex with a capacity of around 5 million cubic meters of natural gas per day at plateau (around 30,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boe/d)), is jointly operated by Sonatrach (51%), Total (37.75%) and Cepsa (11.25%).

Statoil Bags Four Blocks Offshore Brazil

Tim Dodson, executive vice president for Exploration in Statoil. Photo courtesy Statoil

Statoil and partners were the high bidders for four blocks in the Campos basin in Brazil’s 15th licensing round held on 29 March. With the new licenses, Statoil strengthens its position in Brazil and increases synergies with current projects. A consortium comprising Petrobras (30%), ExxonMobil (40%) and Statoil (30%)…

Payne Named Chevron HS&E VP

Chevron Corporation named David Payne corporate vice president of Health, Environment and Safety, effective May 1, 2018. Payne is currently vice president of Chevron’s Drilling and Completions organization. He succeeds Wes Lohec who has elected to retire from Chevron after 37 years of distinguished service on June 1, 2018.

Exxon Leads Oil Majors in Aggressive Offshore Brazil Bids

© currahee_shutter / Adobe Stock

Exxon Mobil Corp roared into Brazil's prolific offshore oil fields again on Thursday, clinching eight blocks in partnership with other oil firms eager to lap up the country's choice reserves ahead of presidential elections later this year. Exxon along with Petrobras and Qatar Petroleum Intl…

Qatar Petroleum Wins Exploration Bids in Offshore Brazil

Photo: Petroleo Brasileiro

Qatar Petroleum and its partners won bids for four exploration blocks in the Campos basin off Brazil's Rio de Janeiro coast on Thursday, the company said in a statement. It will hold a 30 percent stake in two of the blocks to be explored along with Exxon Mobil Corp and Brazil’s state-controlled…

Siccar Point Announces Sale

Jonathan Roger (Photo: Siccar Point)

Siccar Point Energy (“Siccar Point”) has announced that on March 28, 2018, a Sale and Purchase Agreement was signed with Shell UK Limited (“Shell”) under which Shell will acquire a 30% non-operated working interest in UKCS licences P1028 and P1189 (incorporating the Cambo discovery) and a…

Sapura JV Secures Block 30 in Gulf of Mexico

Photo courtesy Sapura Energy Berhad

Sapura Exploration & Production (Sapura E&P), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sapura Energy Berhad (“the Group”, formerly known as SapuraKencana Petroleum Berhad), together with its joint venture partners DEA Deutsche Erdoel Mexico and Premier Oil have been awarded Block 30 in Sureste Basin, a proven and prolific hydrocarbon province in the Gulf of Mexico.

Mexico's Pemex to Operate Two Shallow Water Projects With Partners

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Mexican national oil company Pemex plans to operate at least two new blocks it won with partners in a shallow water auction on Tuesday, the company's exploration chief said in an interview. Pemex expects to invests as much as $300 million overall in a four-year exploration phase for the seven contracts it won…

Italy Must Consult New Parliament Before Naming Saipem Board

Photo: Saipem

Italy's outgoing government should consult the new parliament before naming new boards of state-owned companies such as oil and gas exploration group Saipem, the 5-Star Movement said on Wednesday. The anti-establishment party won most votes at this month's parliamentary election and is vying…

DEA Wins Three Blocks in Mexico’s Bid

Map courtesy DEA Deutsche Erdoel AG

In Mexico’s shallow water bid round 3.1, Deutsche Erdoel Mexico was awarded two blocks with its partners Pemex Exploration and Production and CEPSA and one block jointly with its partners Sapura E&P and Premier Oil. In all three blocks, the affiliate of the German E&P company DEA, Deutsche Erdoel Mexico will be the operator.

Novatek Delivers its First LNG Cargo to India

Photo: Yamal LNG

The Russian natural gas producer, Novatek, has confirmed that it delivered its first shipment of liquefied natural gas (LNG) produced by the Yamal LNG project to India on 27 March. "The LNG was produced by the Yamal LNG project, led by the Russian company, and marks the first ever delivery of Russian Artic LNG to the country," said the company.

Mexican President Defends Energy Reform from Leftist Attacks

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Mexico's president on Thursday defended his decision to open the energy sector against attacks from the man currently favorite to succeed him, saying a rollback of the measure could cost the country billions of dollars in lost investment. The 2013-14 legislative overhaul that ended state…

Asian Oil, Gas Producers Stepping up Activity after Long Lull

© nattapon7 / Adobe Stock

Asia's oil and gas producers are starting to revive projects aimed at deflating years of ballooning energy imports after new investment dried up following the 2014 industry crisis. Spending has so far been driven mainly by state oil companies such as India's ONGC, Thailand's PTTEP and PetroVietnam…

Vietnam Scraps South China Sea Oil Drilling Project

Vietnam's state oil firm PetroVietnam has ordered Spanish energy firm Repsol to suspend its "Red Emperor" project off the country's southeastern coast following pressure from China, the BBC reported on Friday. It would be the second time in less than a year that Vietnam has had to cancel…

South Sudan: U.S. Sanctions Undermine 'search for peace'

U.S. sanctions on 15 South Sudanese oil operators will work against efforts to restore peace and stability in the nation, the government said on Thursday. The sanctions, which were announced on Wednesday, will require companies and government bodies to apply for special licences to do business in the United States…

Greenpeace Boards Statoil Rig

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

Greenpeace activists have boarded a rig that was due to sail to the Arctic to drill prospects on behalf of oil firm Statoil, the environmental group said on Thursday. "We have two people on board and 10 on the water to ensure the rig does not leave port. Our activity started at 8am (0700 GMT) this morning…

Sapura Commences Production at B15 Gas Field

Photo courtesy Sapura E&P

Sapura Exploration and Production (Sarawak) Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sapura Energy Berhad (SEB), informed that it has commenced production at the B15 field. The B15 gas field development is a maiden gas development project for Sapura E&P and the first gas milestone was achieved within two years of the sanction of its Field Development Plan (FDP).

China Says to Have "Prudent" Oil Exploration with Philippines

© Anton Balazh / Adobe Stock

China will prudently advance cooperation with the Philippines on joint oil and gas exploration in the South China Sea, China's top diplomat State Councillor Wang Yi said on Wednesday after meeting his Philippine counterpart. Any potential deals between Manila and Beijing on energy exploration…

Petronas Raises 2018 Spending for Upstream Work

Datuk Mohd Anuar Taib (Photo: Petronas)

Malaysian state energy firm Petroliam Nasional Berhad (Petronas) is increasing capital expenditure for upstream activities slightly in 2018 from last year, upstream chief executive Mohd Anuar Taib said on Wednesday. Petronas, like other oil majors, was hit by the plunge in oil prices from mid-2014 highs…

McDermott to Bid for Asia Offshore Oil, Gas Contracts

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

U.S. engineering and construction company McDermott International plans to bid for $5 billion in contracts in the next few months in Asia Pacific as the region's offshore oil and gas sector recovers, company executives said on Tuesday. The value of contracts available for bids are up from $4 billion six months ago, the McDermott executives said.

Small OK Shale Play Sees Big Bets from Producers

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

A little-known shale oil play in Oklahoma is attracting more drilling and investment as rising output from newer wells is enticing companies to boost production beyond the giant Permian basin in Texas. The Meramec formation is a part of what is called the STACK region - Sooner Trend Anadarko…