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Saturday, March 24, 2018

Longer Oil Prices News

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, which need to produce more oil and gas to ensure their countries' energy security, executives said this week during an industry event in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Asia is by far the biggest, fastest-growing consumer of oil, yet its output is falling faster than in any other region.

Sharp Contrasts in Markets Impact Van Oord

Photo: Van Oord

The year 2017 was dominated by the difficult market conditions in the dredging and oil & gas sectors, says Pieter van Oord, CEO, Van Oord, the Dutch contracting company that specializes in dredging and land reclamation. The global contractor specialising in dredging, marine engineering and offshore projects (oil, gas and wind) said that the volume of work in offshore wind was stable, and the market dynamic in the offshore wind sector will generate a lot of opportunities for years to come.

Wells Fargo Calls $100 Oil a 'Pipe Dream'

Image: Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries

USD 100 per barrel oil  is but a “pipe dream,” Wells Fargo said in a new investor note, reports MarketWatch. The report quoted Wells Fargo’s John LaForge saying that he’s doesn’t expect oil prices to climb anywhere near $100 a barrel over the next few years. Barrels price will bounce between $30 and $60 in the coming years, according to top bank’s diagnosis. “We continue to hear that big cutbacks are on the cusp of happening,” he said. “The evidence, however, implies otherwise. Shale production has caused American output to stand higher than it did in 2014, before the oil price crisis began.

Euronav Says 2017 Was a Challenging Year

Photo: Euronav NV

2017 was a challenging year for th Belgium-based tanker owner Euronav NV from an operational perspective on account of challenging freight market driven by ship oversupply & OPEC restrictions, said Paddy Rodgers, CEO of Euronav. The concentrated delivery schedule of new tonnage coupled with restricted crude supply from extended OPEC production cuts maintained freight rates at low levels throughout the year. Despite these headwinds, demand for oil continued to remain robust and above long-term trend boosted by rising global economic growth and a supportive oil price structure.

Iraq's Southern Oil Exports Fall in March

© Esbjörn Strid / Adobe Stock

Oil exports from southern Iraq have fallen by 70,000 barrels per day (bpd) this month, according to shipping data and an industry source, suggesting OPEC's second-largest producer is heading for a third month of lower shipments. Southern Iraqi exports in the first 21 days of March averaged about 3.36 million bpd, compared to 3.43 million bpd in February, shipping data followed by Reuters and independent tracking by an industry source showed. The fall suggests there is still no…

Libya Seizes Tanker Suspected of Fuel Smuggling

© Andrea Izzotti / Adobe Stock

Libya's naval forces seized a Togo-flagged fuel tanker and arrested its Greek crew on suspicion they planned to smuggle oil out of the North African country, a spokesman for the forces said on Thursday. Libya's western coast is a departure point for the smuggling of heavily subsidised gasoline to neighbours such as Tunisia and Malta, where retail prices are much higher. "The naval forces seized a Togo-flagged oil tanker in the territorial waters without permissions from the state of Libya. It has the name LAMAR," naval forces spokesman Ayoub Qassem told Reuters.

ADNOC Signs Major Offshore Concession Agreements with Total

Image: Abu Dhabi National Oil Company

The Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) has signed agreements with Total of France, awarding them stakes in two of Abu Dhabi’s new offshore concessions. Under the terms of the agreements, Total has been awarded a 20% interest in the Umm Shaif and Nasr concession and a 5% interest in the Lower Zakum concession. Total is ADNOC’s largest and one of its longest international partners, active in Abu Dhabi’s oil and gas sector since 1939. Today, the French super-major collaborates with ADNOC across the value chain…

U.S. Crude Exports to Asia Slump as WTI Outperforms

File Image: the U.S. crude export hub of Corpus Christi, TX is upgrading its facilities for anticipated growth. (CREDIT: Port of Corpus Christi)

Exports of U.S. crude oil to Asia appear to be starting to struggle under the weight of a narrowing discount for its domestic benchmark crude to international grades and efforts by other suppliers to maintain competitiveness. Vessel-tracking and port data suggest Asian imports of U.S. crude were equivalent to about 560,000 barrels per day (bpd) in February, down sharply from 676,190 bpd in January. March's figure may be even weaker with data compiled by Thomson Reuters Oil Research and Forecasts pointing to Asian imports of only about 290,000 bpd.

Tanker Scrapping is on the Rise -Vessels Value

© katiekk2 / Adobe Stock

Tanker demolition is on the rise as 3.5 million DWT has been scrapped so far in 2018, according to Vessels Value. Each factor played a part as the decision to remove a ship from service varies depending on the financial situation of the owner. Some may be motivated as the $/t offered price offsets enough of their remaining mortgage on a ship to allow them to move out of a low cashflow market, while others may remove a ship after it completes a long-term storage contract. Higher…

Record-size US Offshore Oil Lease Sale Draws Modest Bidding

© Mike Mareen / Adobe Stock

Oil and gas drillers bid modestly on Gulf of Mexico acreage in the largest lease sale in American history on Wednesday, dealing a setback to the Trump administration's efforts to rapidly pump up investment in the region. The Interior Department had offered up a record 77 million acres (31.2 million hectares) for development in the Gulf with discounted royalty rates on the shallower tracts as part of a broader effort by President Donald Trump's administration to ramp up U.S. fossil fuels output.

Indonesia, CNOOC Talks End in Deadlock

Early renegotiation of gas selling price with China National Offshore Oil Company (CNOOC) has ended in deadlock as the ceiling price proposed by CNOOC was seen as too low, according to Asian Pulse. Indonesia has signed a long term contract to supply China's Fujian province with 2.6 million tons of liquefied natural gas (LNG) annually from Tangguh, Papua. Under the agreement in 1992 the LNG price was tide with crude oil price or around $2.4 per MMBTU based on a ceiling price of $25 per barrel of crude oil. The ceiling price is no longer acceptable to Indonesia with the soaring crude oil price at present. Currently the LNG price is around $8 per MMBTU based on a crude oil price of $65 per barrel.

Korea Lines orders two VLCCs at Hyundai Heavy

Photo: Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI)

South Korean shipping firm Korea Line Corporation (KLC) has placed an order for two new very large crude carriers(VLCC) at country's biggest yard, Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI), and the company will explore further collaborations with the country's shipbuilders. According to Yonhap news agency, the new VLCCs are expected to have been delivered by the  2020. The total amount of the agreement will amount at 185.6 billion won (US$173 million). The carriers, which can hold 300,000 tons of crude oil each…

Asia Tankers-VLCCs Rates Ease as Tanker Jams Fade

file image: A VLCC transits the Suez Canal (Suez Canal Authority)

Port congestion eases at Basra and Chinese ports; tanker demand set to expand on lower oil prices. Freight rates for very large crude carriers (VLCCs), hurt by slower-than-usual release of cargo, could slip further next week as more tonnage becomes available with the easing of recent tanker traffic jams in China, ship brokers said on Friday. Charter rates from the Middle East to Japan slipped to a six-month low on Thursday, falling by 12 Worldscale points or almost $14,000 since April 21.

Asia: LPG Shipping and LNG Pricing

Image: Navigator Gas

While declining Asian LNG prices have reduced margins on the long-distance LNG trade, causing spot-charter rates for LNG vessels to fall, LPG shipping earnings are forecast to remain buoyant on the back of low oil prices and the absence of fuel substitution. According to LPG Forecaster, published by global shipping consultancy Drewry, low oil prices have not triggered the substitution of LPG as the fuel of industrial use, as feared by some analysts. As a result, LPG shipping demand has remained intact and low bunker prices have supported vessel earnings.

U.S. Crude Imports To Continue To Rise

Due to declining domestic crude oil production and rising oil demand, crude imports will continue to increase over the next two decades accounting for 64 percent of U.S. oil supplies by 2020, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said in its annual long-term energy outlook. Currently, the U.S. imports 52 percent, or 8.6 million bpd of its oil and domestic oil output at 6 million bpd is at its lowest level since the early 1950s. U.S. petroleum consumption is projected to rise an average 1.3 percent annually over the next two decades, growing from the current 19.4 million bpd to 25.1 million bpd by 2020, EIA said. Although world crude oil prices have more than doubled since the beginning of 1999…

Methanol Plant at Libyan Port Shut after Accidental Blast

 A methanol plant in the Libyan oil port of Brega has stopped operations after an accidental explosion caused by a gas leak, an official said on Tuesday.   The plant will remain shut until safe operations can be guaranteed, but it was not clear how long this would take, said Issa Mukhtar, an official at Sirte Oil Company which runs the plant.   One worker was injured by the explosion which occurred early on Saturday and was caused by a leak in a natural gas heating unit, Libya's National Oil Corporation (NOC) said.   Firefighters dealt with the blast, which could be heard across the surrounding area, a Sirte Oil engineer said. (Reporting by Ayman al-Warfalli Writing by Aidan Lewis; editing by David Evans)

Vanishing Volatility Signals Oil Market Shift

Source: Reuters / J. Kemp

The oil market has rarely been so quiet. Benchmark Brent has traded in a narrow range of $5 either side of $110 per barrel since the summer of 2012. Price volatility has fallen to some of the lowest levels since crude futures markets were established in the early 1980s. Oil prices have rarely been so stable for so long since the 1973 oil shock ended the long period of calm in the 1950s and 1960s and ushered in the era of OPEC dominance. Measured volatility in front-month Brent futures prices has been below average continuously for almost two years.

Hardy Takes Over as Vitol CEO

Ian Taylor, who helped build Vitol into the world's biggest oil trader, will step down as chief executive and continue as chairman, the company said on Friday, naming a long-time ally and insider, Russell Hardy, as the new group CEO. Taylor said two years ago he was battling cancer although he continued to travel the world, chasing deals from Africa to the United States and Australia while also working as chairman of the board of trustees for London's Royal Opera House. Hardy, who started his career at BP and traded fuel oil, was long seen as one of two front-runners to succeed Taylor alongside another Vitol veteran Chris Bake. Vitol said in a statement that Hardy joined the firm in 1993 and held a number of trading and management roles in Singapore and London.

Hedging Energy Bets: The Case for a 2018 Oil Bull Run

© Renovacio/Adobe Stock

Hedge funds gamble OPEC will tighten oil market too much. Hedge funds are the most bullish about oil prices in years, expecting further gains even as prices touch multi-year highs and ignoring the risk linked to such a large concentration of positions. A record net long position has been accumulated by hedge funds and other money managers, amounting to 1,183 million barrels in the five biggest futures and options contracts covering crude, gasoline and heating oil. Portfolio managers held a record 1,328 million barrels of long positions in Brent, WTI, U.S. gasoline and U.S. heating oil on Dec.

Two-month Global LNG Rally Ends, Weak Oil Tempts Buyers

Asian spot liquefied natural gas prices ended their 2-month rally this week, interrupted by weak demand in Japan and South Korea as falling crude oil prices push importers to turn to oil-linked long-term LNG supplies. Spot LNG prices for November delivery lost ground to $14.60 per million British thermal units (mmBtu), versus $15 per mmBtu last week, amid still scarce demand from end-users in Asia. Most LNG trade takes place via 20-year supply deals offered by major oil companies and producer countries such as Qatar, where buyers pay a price linked to the cost of crude oil. With the benchmark Brent crude price slipping nearly as far as $92 a barrel, from $105/barrel several weeks ago, oil-linked LNG for delivery in January is becoming increasingly competitive against spot priced cargoes.

Oil Below $40/bbl After Rise in US Oil Rigs

U.S. crude oil prices on Friday dove below $40 a barrel for the first time since the 2009 financial crisis, notching their longest weekly losing streak in 29 years after a further rise in U.S. drilling and a drop in Chinese manufacturing. Oil prices pushed briefly below the $40-pivot mark following weekly data that showed U.S. energy firms added two oil drilling rigs last week, the fifth increase in a row. The rise in rigs, which is emerging now after a second quarter lull in prices, is adding to concerns U.S. shale production is proving slow to respond to falling prices, prolonging a global glut. "Everyone is still looking at it saying 'Wow, you still don't have production coming down,'" said Tariq Zahir, founder at Tyche Capital in Laurel Hollow, New York.

Brent Slips below $105

HFO: File image

Brent crude slipped under $105 a barrel on Monday, dropping from a one-week high hit on Friday, as U.S. intervention in Iraq eased concerns over the risk of disruption to supply from OPEC's second-largest producer. * U.S. Analysts have said that U.S. air strikes on Islamic State targets in northern Iraq over the weekend could help enforce stability in the country, curbing the risk of supply disruptions. Iraqi Kurdistan said on Friday that its oil output remained unaffected. "For this week…

Oil Price Crash Claims First US LNG Project Casualty

Excelerate Energy's Texan liquefied natural gas terminal plan has become the first victim of an oil price slump threatening the economics of U.S. LNG export projects. A halving in the oil price since June has upended assumptions by developers that cheap U.S. LNG would muscle into high-value Asian energy markets, which relied on oil prices staying high to make the U.S. supply affordable. The floating 8 million tonne per annum (mtpa) export plant moored at Lavaca Bay, Texas advanced by Houston-based Excelerate has been put on hold, according to regulatory filings obtained by Reuters. The project was initially due to begin exports in 2018. Excelerate's move bodes ill for thirteen other U.S.

Maritime Reporter Magazine Cover Mar 2018 - Annual World Yearbook

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