Total Expects Decision on First Libra FPSO by Summer
A decision on the first floating, production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessels on the giant Libra project in Brazil will be made by the summer, Total's head of exploration and production said on Thursday. "We are actively working actively on Libra to have the first FPSO decided before summer," Arnaud Breuillac told an oil summit in Paris. Total is one of the partners in Libra with Brazil's state-controlled oil company Petróleo Brasileiro SA. The project will see the installation of four FPSOs in the field with a capacity to produce 180,000 barrels of oil a day (bpd) in 2020. (Reporting by Bate Felix)
10 Suspects Arrested on Ship of Stolen Oil
The Nigerian navy has arrested 10 suspects after intercepting a vessel carrying stolen crude oil off the coast of the Niger Delta, a senior military official said on Wednesday. The suspects - a Nigerian, two Pakistanis, three Ghanaians, one Indonesian, one Beninois and two Ukrainians - had siphoned about two thousand metric tonnes of crude oil from a loading facility belonging to Shell Petroleum, the official said. "The suspects were caught in the early hours of Tuesday while siphoning crude oil into the vessel from Afremo A platform, a loading jacket belonging to the Shell Petroleum and Development Company in Forcados River," Navy Commodore Ibrahim Dewu, commander of the NNS Delta, said in a statement.
Saipem Teams Up with Italy Railways in Russia Project Bid
Saipem has teamed up with Italy's state railways to bid for work on a Russian high-speed train project as the Italian oil engineering and contracting firm seeks new business to offset an ongoing slump in the energy industry. Oil service groups like Saipem have been hit by a sharp fall in oil prices since mid-2014 that has led energy majors to cut billions of dollars in costs and delay investments. Oil and gas exploration and development firms spent just 400 billion euros ($436 billion) on projects last year compared to 700 billion euros in 2014, according to Saipem CEO Stefano Cao. "We've signed a memo of understanding with Ferrovie dello Stato (Italy railways) to make a joint bid for a part of the Moscow-Kazan project," Cao told shareholders at a meeting on Friday.
Maiden Bakken oil cargo to Asia ships out, with more to come
The first ever reported export of North Dakota's crude oil to Asia left port last month, according to a shipping document seen by Reuters on Wednesday, in what is expected to be the first of numerous cargoes once the key Dakota Access pipeline starts moving oil in May. Swiss-based Mercuria Energy Trading S.A. loaded more than 600,000 barrels of Bakken crude, as well as some Mars Sour crude, in late March off the coast of Louisiana onto the very large crude carrier (VLCC) Maran Canopus, destined for Singapore, according to the bill of loading and ship tracking data. The burgeoning appetite for U.S. crude among Asian refiners could be a boon for Bakken crude, especially when the Dakota pipeline starts up.
BW Offshore to get FPSO from Keppe
Keppel Shipyard Ltd (Keppel Shipyard), is on track to deliver a Floating Production Storage and Offloading (FPSO) vessel to BW Catcher Limited, a wholly-owned subsidiary of BW Offshore. When completed BW Catcher will be on a 7-year fixed term and 18 years of options contract with Premier Oil and will be deployed to the Catcher Field located in Central North Sea, UK. Keppel Shipyard's work scope on the FPSO include the installation and integration of topside modules. BW Catcher is scheduled for sailaway from the shipyard in the next few months and is on track to achieve its first oil in 2017. "Having worked together on 11 other projects previously, Keppel has proven to be a reliable partner," said Carl Arnet, CEO, BW Offshore.
Statoil Downplays Risks Ahead of Arctic Drilling
Norway's Statoil on Monday played down concerns that drilling in the Arctic is risky, days before it kickstarts its drilling campaign in the Barents Sea, where the country believes around half of its remaining resources could be located. "We will start drilling the first well, Blaamann, during May ... followed by Kayak, Gemini (Nord), Korpfjell and Koigen (Central)," said a Statoil spokesman, adding each might take about a month to drill. All the wells are in areas free of sea ice thanks to the warm Gulf Stream…
Singapore Conducts Chemical Spill Drill
To test and demonstrate Singapore’s readiness to tackle oil and chemical spills, a multi-agency joint chemical spill exercise was conducted on Friday. Organized by the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) the exercise took place at the conclusion of the 10th International Chemical and Oil Pollution Conference & Exhibition (ICOPCE), held in conjunction with the Singapore Maritime Week 2017. ChemSpill 2017 comprised a tabletop management exercise at MPA's Port Operations Control Centre Vista and a full scale chemical and oil spill response equipment deployment.
Tanker Market Could See Difficult Q2, Q3
New vessels expected to hit freight rates; new trade route from east U.S. to Asia to meet Chinese demand. The tanker market may face a "difficult" second and third quarter this year after a robust first quarter as supply of newly built vessels loom, Belgian oil tanker operator Euronav said on Tuesday. "The rates today are not the same as what we have seen in previous quarters," Chief Executive Paddy Rodgers told Reuters on the sidelines of a shipping conference. An additional 50 very large crude carriers (VLCCs) are estimated to be added to the global fleet of supertankers this year…
Op/Ed: Trump Signals New Day for Offshore Energy
National Ocean Industries Association president Randall Luthi weighs in on President Trump’s Executive Order on offshore energy. It’s a new day and a new attitude for American energy. The National Ocean Industries Association (NOIA) applauds President Donald Trump’s Executive Order recognizing the vital role of offshore energy in an overall national energy policy. The Energy Information Administration (EIA) predicts that in the year 2040, traditional forms of energy, particularly fossil fuels, will provide almost 80 percent of our energy needs.
Libya Captures Oil-smuggling Tankers after Firefight
Libyan naval forces captured two vessels suspected of smuggling oil from the North African country after gun battles lasting several hours west of the capital Tripoli, a spokesman for the service said on Friday. Libyan forces frequently capture vessels smuggling oil and arms off the coast and the North African state has become a haven for migrant smugglers who take advantage of the country's turmoil to ship people across to Europe. Ayoub Qassem, a spokesman for the Libyan naval forces, said Ukraine-flagged tanker Routa and a vessel with an unspecified African nation's flag named Stark were captured early Friday. "Clashes lasted for three hours, but the two tankers were successfully seized," Qassem said. The incident occurred in the Sidi Said area west of Tripoli.
Caspian Sea States Cooperate on Pollution Response
International Maritime Organization (IMO) has joined countries and stakeholders concerned with protecting the Caspian Sea from oil pollution at a regional meeting in Bandar-e Anzali, Islamic Republic of Iran (16-20 April). Participants are discussing the implementation of the Aktau Protocol on Regional Preparedness, Response and Cooperation in Combating Oil Pollution Incidents and, in particular, finalization of the Regional Caspian Sea Plan on cooperation in combating oil pollution in emergencies.
BP Oil Well Spills Out of Control in Alaska
The oil giant British Petroleum (BP) oil and gas well on Alaska’s Northern Slope that blew out on Friday continues to spill crude oil and gas uncontrollably. There have been no injuries or reports of damage to wildlife, but crews trying to secure the well have failed amid frigid winds gusting to 38 miles an hour. Well pressure was monitored throughout the night and excess pressure was bled off to keep it within a safe rang. There was no estimate about volumes of natural gas and oil released.
Venezuelan Crude Sales to the US Down in March
Venezuelan crude oil sales to the United States declined in March for the third month in a row this year to 651,710 barrels per day due to falling exports of main grade Merey, according to Thomson Reuters trade flows data. Venezuela's crude output fell in 2016 to its lowest level in 23 years. Analysts expect another decline in 2017 due to lack of investment and to cash flow problems affecting state-run oil firm PDVSA, which controls more than 40 joint ventures for exploration and production. The volume of Venezuelan crude that PDVSA and its joint ventures exported in March was down by 2.3 percent from February and by 18 percent from a year earlier.
Sovcomflot Holds PDVSA Oil Hostage over Debts
Venezuela's state-run oil company, PDVSA, sent a tanker in October to the Caribbean with the expectation that its cargo of crude would fetch about $20 million - money the crisis-stricken nation desperately needs. Instead, the owner of the tanker, the Russian state-owned shipping conglomerate Sovcomflot, held the oil in hopes of collecting partial payment on $30 million that it says PDVSA owes for unpaid shipping fees. Despite a longstanding alliance between Venezuela and Russia, Sovcomflot sued PDVSA in St. Maarten, a Dutch island on the northeast end of the Caribbean. "The ship owners ... imposed garnishment on the aforementioned oil cargo," reads a March decision by the St. Maarten court.
East Coast Refiners Mull Texas Oil as North Dakota Alternative
U.S. East Coast refiners are looking to buy increasing volumes of domestic crude oil from the Gulf Coast, two sources said, the latest twist in a trade flow upheaval in the wake of the opening of the Dakota Access pipeline. Major U.S. East Coast refiners profited from railing hundreds of thousands of barrels of discounted Bakken crude to their plants daily from 2013 until 2015. But as more and more pipelines were built in North Dakota, the discount began to disappear, and so did the rail cars.
Iraq's Oil Exports Fall in April Amid Port Work, OPEC Cut
Oil shipments from Iraq's southern terminals have fallen so far in April, according to loading data and an industry source, reflecting a temporary drop in export capacity and Iraqi efforts to comply with OPEC production cuts. OPEC's second-largest producer has curbed output this year as part of an OPEC-led supply reduction deal, although OPEC figures show that until March Iraq had delivered a smaller cut than other members such as top exporter Saudi Arabia. Exports from southern Iraq - the outlet for most of the country's crude - in the first 19 days of April averaged 3.10 million barrels per day (bpd), according to shipping data tracked by Reuters and by an industry source.
Banned at Sea: Venezuela's Crude-stained Oil Tankers
In the scorching heat of the Caribbean Sea, workers in scuba suits scrub crude oil by hand from the hull of the Caspian Galaxy, a tanker so filthy it can't set sail in international waters. The vessel is among many that are constantly contaminated at two major export terminals where they load crude from Venezuela's state-run oil company, PDVSA. The water here has an oily sheen from leaks in the rusty pipelines under the surface. That means the tankers have to be cleaned before traveling to many foreign ports…
IMO 2020: The Future of Fuel
There has been little reaction by way of statements or position papers from marine fuel lubricant manufacturers to the IMO MEPC70 proposals for a global fuel sulfur content cap of 0.5 percent by 2020 but they are fully aware of the implications of the proposed regulations and are taking what could be termed a ‘pragmatic approach’ to fuel regulation compliance. Marine lubricant suppliers have avoided getting involved in the debate as to whether the IMO MEPC70 proposals to reduce permissible marine fuel sulfur content to 0.5 percent or less is good…
Pemex Approves New Deep Water Gulf Joint Venture
The board of Mexico's state-owned oil company Pemex on Thursday approved its second-ever deep water joint venture covering the Nobilis-Maximino block in the country's territorial Gulf waters. Reuters revealed details of the plan last week. (Reporting by David Alire Garcia)
Iraq Completes Basra Oil Jetty Repairs
Repair work at a Basra oil jetty damaged by a tanker collision last month were completed on Sunday, two officials at state-run South Oil Company told Reuters on Monday. Crude exports from the Basra terminal were not affected by the collision that happened on March 24, when strong winds caused a very large crude carrier (VLCC) to lurch into berth number 1. A one-million-barrel vessel, the Storviken, was anchored at that berth early on Monday, loading a cargo of light crude, said the two South Oil Co. officials. OPEC's second-largest producer, after Saudi Arabia, Iraq exports most of its crude from the southern Basra region, on the Gulf. The Basra terminal's loading capacity is estimated at around 1.8 million barrels per day (bpd). (Reporting by Aref Mohammed
Updated Forecast: Floating Production System Orders
World Energy Reports has released its midterm five year forecast of production floater orders. The forecast, detailed in the March 2017 WER report, reflects positive and negative developments in underlying business drivers since WER’s five year forecast last October. Likelihood that the November U.S. election results will accelerate U.S. More rapid expected increase in cost of capital – U.S. Overall, the net impact of these changes is slightly negative – but the outlook for a ramp up in production floater orders remains bullish.
Iran's Crude Exports Dip to 14-month low
Iran's crude exports to hit 14-month low; May exports to total 1.66 mln bpd in May. Iran's crude oil exports are set to hit a 14-month low in May, a person with knowledge of the Middle Eastern country's tanker loading schedule said, suggesting the country is struggling to raise exports after clearing out stocks stored on tankers. Part of the drop may also be attributable to a decline in demand, as loadings bound for India are set to slump to a one-year low after a dispute over the award of a contract for a gas field and Japan's orders fall by more than half from April.
Marshall Islands Court Sets Date for Frontline Case against DHT
Oil tanker firm Frontline said on Friday the high court in the Marshall Islands has agreed to hear on May 17 its complaint against takeover target DHT Holdings, which is incorporated in the remote Pacific republic, over a rival deal with BW Offshore. Frontline, controlled by Norwegian-born billionaire John Fredriksen and owner of a 14.5 percent stake in DHT, has been trying for the past year to take over its New York-listed rival and is opposing what it called "unfair transaction…