Marine Link
Monday, October 15, 2018

Wood Mackenzie News

Tokyo Gas Takes First LNG Cargo from Cove Point

© Dexter / MarineTraffic.com

Japan received its first shipment of liquefied natural gas (LNG) on Monday from Dominion Energy Inc's newly completed Cove Point export plant, the beginning of a jump in imports from the United States by the world's biggest buyer of the fuel.The docking of the tanker LNG Sakura at Tokyo Gas Co's Negishi terminal near Tokyo is another marker of shifting global energy flows as the United States ramps up exports of gas and oil from shale formations.The cargo is the first of 2.2 million tonnes of LNG a year Japanese companies are purchasing under long-term contracts from Cove Point in Maryland.

Shell's LNG Canada Seen as Tip of Megaproject Iceberg

Photo courtesy of Shell

The launch of a massive liquefied natural gas (LNG) export project in Canada has finally fired the starting gun on a wave of plan approvals around the world, needed to avoid a supply crunch after 2020.Royal Dutch Shell said it would export LNG from Western Canada by 2025 after approving a $14 billion project, hot on the heels of Qatar's commitment last week to expand its facilities.The two announcements, adding 37 million tonnes a year (mtpa) to the 290 million tonnes traded in 2017…

China and Shifting Seaborne Iron Ore Dynamics

Photo: © icarmen13/Adobe Stock

The seaborne iron ore market appears to be in something of a sweet spot currently, with largely steady demand and prices that have been flatlining for the past couple of months. Of course, another way of saying that a market is enjoying relatively stable and good times is that it's boring, but in iron ore there is plenty of action bubbling beneath the seemingly calm exterior. It's not so much that iron ore prices or volumes are expected to shift dramatically in the coming months, it's more that structural changes in the world's biggest importer, China, are re-shaping how the industry works.

China's Stricter Ship Emissions Rules a Boon for IMO 2020 Compliance

© donvictori0 / Adobe Stock

Tighter rules on shipping emissions around China's coastlines from the start of next year is a clear sign the world's No.

New Rules on Ship Emissions Herald Sea Change for Oil Market

© xy / Adobe Stock

New rules coming into force from 2020 to curb pollution produced by the world's ships are worrying everyone from OPEC oil producers to bunker fuel sellers and shipping companies.The regulations will slash emissions of sulfur, which is blamed for causing respiratory diseases and is a component of acid rain that damages vegetation and wildlife.But the energy and shipping industries are ill-prepared, say analysts, with refiners likely to struggle to meet higher demand for cleaner…

Woodside Mulls Texas Sempra LNG Exit

The chief executive officer of Woodside Petroleum Ltd said on Tuesday that Australia's biggest independent oil and natural gas company will soon decide whether to continue to invest in Sempra Energy's Port Arthur liquefied natural gas (LNG) export project in Texas. "We've got to make some decisions pretty soon about our continued pursuit (of Port Arthur) with Sempra," said Coleman, noting that Woodside has been paying part of the project's development costs. "What we've been doing is just paying our way (with Port Arthur), and whether that is going to give us an adequate return, I would say today that is very challenged," Coleman said.

Maersk Tankers Tests Wind Power to Fuel Ships

Photo: Maersk Tankers

Maersk Tankers is testing the use of wind power to fuel its ships, a new technology it says can cut fuel consumption by up to 10 percent and help the industry reduce polluting emissions.The move comes as the global shipping industry is suffering from rising oil prices and preparing for fuel costs to rise further by around a quarter, or some $24 billion, in 2020 when new rules limiting sulphur kick in.The company has installed two 30-metre tall metal cylinders on board the Maersk Pelican, a Long Range 2 (LR2) product tanker vessel.

For the Global LNG Industry, is the FSRU Honeymoon Over?

(Photo: Höegh LNG)

A giant vessel docked at the port of Moheshkhali in Bangladesh two months ago, propelling the populous but poor nation into the fast-expanding club of liquefied natural gas (LNG) buyers.The Excellence is the latest floating storage and regasification unit (FSRU), a type of carrier that has proliferated since 2015 as many countries switch to a cleaner and increasingly cheaper fuel than oil and coal.But the young FSRU industry has been beset by more project delays than successes in the past 12 months as fluctuating energy prices…

Gulf of Mexico Lease Sale to Test Response to Trump-era Regulations

(File photo: Shell)

A federal auction of exploration leases in the Gulf of Mexico next week will test energy companies' appetite for acreage after the Trump administration left royalty rates for deepwater parcels unchanged, bucking an industry call to lower them.The U.S. Gulf of Mexico has faced waning interest in recent years as competition stepped up from other basins globally, as well as from onshore shale basins and Mexico's waters in the Gulf.Oil companies had lobbied for lower royalty payments for deepwater acreage because of the projects' high cost and long lead time before production can begin.

S.Korea LNG Imports Set to Ease from Record

© alexyz3d / Adobe Stock

South Korean imports of liquefied natural gas are set to ease from record levels racked up in the first-half of the year, with appetite for the fuel from utilities seen fading as a raft of nuclear power stations come back online.The country's imports of the commodity jumped nearly 16 percent year-on-year to a record 22.7 million tonnes in the first six months of 2018, according to customs data in mid-July, boosted by demand from power firms as around half the nation's 24 nuclear…

LNG Shipping Rates Spike with No Respite Seen Through 2019

(Photo: Höegh LNG)

The price of shipping liquefied natural gas (LNG) has spiked in September and is likely to remain high next year, buoyed by rising production from new plants and concerns that demand for LNG vessels will outpace supply.The rate for vessels shipping LNG from the Atlantic Basin to Asia has jumped to $90,000 to $95,000 a day this week from $75,000 a day at the end of August, brokers and traders said.Rates, which broadly hovered around $30,000 to $40,000 a day from 2015 to 2017, have risen due to longer distances covered to transport LNG from new terminals in the United States and Arctic Russia…

Plans for Another South Australia LNG Import Plant in the Works

A private firm is looking to import liquefied natural gas (LNG) to South Australia starting in 2020, around the same time as two other proposed import projects, looking to fill a supply gap as domestic gas gets sucked into LNG exports.Venice Energy, set up by former BHP Billiton executives, plans to submit a development application to the South Australian government within the next month to park a floating storage and regasification unit (FSRU) in Port Adelaide, Managing Director Kym Winter-Dewhirst said.If regulatory approvals come through by March, construction could begin by June 2019, he told Reuters in an interview. The project would be funded partly by Venice's owners…

Transocean to Buy Ocean Rig in $2.7 Bln Deal

© Eugenio Roqueñi / MarineTraffic.com

Offshore oil driller Transocean Ltd said on Tuesday it would buy peer Ocean Rig UDW Inc in a $2.7 billion cash-and-stock deal, its second major acquisition this year as the company bets on a recovery in the offshore sector.The acquisition signals new optimism for offshore drillers, which were hit hard by the steep plunge in oil prices from 2014. Offshore projects, which are more costly than onshore work and take years to develop, became less attractive after oil prices fell to below $30 a barrel in 2016.Global crude prices have since recovered to above $70…

Total Makes Major Offshore UK Gas Discovery

(Image: Total)

French oil and energy group Total said on Monday it had made a major gas discovery on the Glendronach prospect, located off the coast of the Shetland islands in the North Sea.Total said preliminary tests on the new gas discovery confirmed good reservoir quality, permeability and well production deliverability, with recoverable resources estimated at about one trillion cubic feet (1 tcf).It said Glendronach, located near its Edradour field, will be tied back to the existing infrastructure…

China to Cut US Oil Imports Amid Trade Spat

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Chinese oil buyers will keep taking crude from the United States through September, but plan to reduce future purchases to avoid a likely import tariff amid a trade spat between the world's two largest economies, multiple industry sources said.Beijing has put U.S. energy products, including crude oil and refined products, on lists of goods that it will hit with import taxes in retaliation for similar moves by Washington.Beijing did not specify when it will impose a 25 percent tax on oil…

Petronas Buys Stake in Canadian LNG Export Project

(File photo courtesy of Shell)

Malaysia's state-owned oil and gas company Petroliam Nasional Bhd said on Thursday it is buying a 25 percent stake in a Canadian liquefied natural gas (LNG) export project, nearly a year after cancelling its own planned terminal.The company, known as Petronas, scrapped plans to build a $36 billion ($28 billion) LNG export terminal in British Columbia last year over concerns of a glut in the market that led to depressed fuel prices.But surprisingly strong demand from China, South Korea and India has erased those concerns…

Corpus Christi Gearing Up to Handle US Shale Export Boom

(File photo: Port Corpus Christi)

Port officials on Tuesday are expected to consider $300 million in financing that would prepare the country's largest oil-export port - Corpus Christi, Texas - to handle a surge in U.S. shale production over the next five years.International buyers would like more U.S. crude but are unable to get it because of infrastructure constraints along the U.S. Gulf Coast. Terminals originally designed for imports only recently have revamped operations to handle exports including accepting…

Oil Traders Ready for Musical Chairs as China Tariffs Loom

© Haris / Adobe Stock

Oil markets are bracing for a reshuffle of global trade flows as China threatens to impose tit-for-tat tariffs on imports of U.S. energy products, including crude.China, which has bought an average 330,000 barrels per day (bpd) of U.S. crude oil this year, is threatening to place a 25 percent tariff on various U.S. commodity exports, including crude oil, although it is so far unclear when such a measure would come in place.The decision came in response to U.S. President Donald…

Shale Growth could Overwhelm U.S. Refiners, Fuel Exports

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

Rising U.S. shale oil production will overwhelm the nation's refining capacity, with three-quarters of the additional oil produced in the United States by 2023 shipped to Europe and Asia, according to a new study by consultancy Wood Mackenzie. The research points to the continued impact of U.S. shale on global markets and the mismatch between domestic refining capacity and rising crude output. The oil could bottleneck at U.S. Gulf Coast ports unless new infrastructure is built, researchers said. U.S.

BP Expects 90% Compliance for Marine SOx Emissions Caps

© Jordi de Rueda / Adobe Stock

Oil major BP Plc expects more than 90 percent of the world's shipping fleet will comply with new regulations slashing sulfur levels ships are allowed to burn starting 2020, a company executive said on Tuesday. Coming International Maritime Organization (IMO) rules will cut the amount of sulfur emissions that ships worldwide are allowed from 3.5 percent to 0.5 percent by 2020. "Potential non-compliance is a significant issue that the market has been contending with," Jason Breslaw, who leads BP's distillate trading origination across the Americas, said at an industry conference in New Orleans.

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.

Shipping Fuel Costs to Spike 25% on Sulphur Cap

© Kara / Adobe Stock

Costs to rise from roughly $100 bln today; just 2 pct of global fleet to have scrubbers in 2020. Global shipping fuel costs are likely to rise by a quarter, or $24 billion, in 2020 when new rules limiting sulphur kick in, consultants Wood Mackenzie said on Wednesday. The ballooning costs will come as the change in regulations forces a portion of the world's fleet to switch to lower sulphur, but higher cost, fuels such as marine gasoil (MGO) and ultra low sulphur fuel oil. The…

Shell, Inpex Race to Export Aussie LNG

Shell's Prelude FLNG (Credit: Trelleborg)

Shell aims to start exports from Prelude LNG this year; Inpex hopes to commence shipments from Ichthys LNG. Shell and Inpex are on the final stretch of a years-long race to export gas from offshore northern Australia, where both have spent billions of dollars building the world's biggest maritime vessels to grab a slice of Asia's booming LNG market. Anglo-Dutch energy major Royal Dutch Shell and Inpex, Japan's biggest oil and gas producer, are vying for first gas from two overlapping fields after delays and cost overruns that have plagued both projects.

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