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Oil & Gas

Mexico said to begin annual oil-hedging as prices drop

30/07/2015

Mexico began its annual program to lock in oil sales for the coming year as a shield against a further drop in prices, three people with direct knowledge said. Morgan Stanley, Citigroup Inc., JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. are among the banks involved, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the process is private. Mexico’s hedging program is probably the largest undertaken by a national government, the chief economist for the country’s Finance Ministry said in 2012. The Latin American country has started buying the puts, which gives it the right to sell oil at a predetermined price, earlier than the usual period of late August to late September, the people said. They declined to provide further details, including the price level. Mexico’s hedging program has often roiled energy markets since its introduction in 1990-91. Spokesmen for Morgan Stanley, Citigroup, JPMorgan and Goldman Sachs declined to comment. Press officials at Mexico’s Finance Ministry said they won’t comment about any hedging until November, when Congress sets the public budget for the following year. Ricardo Medina, a spokesman for the central bank, which executes the hedging program, declined to comment.

Oil & Gas

Contractor job losses lower than previous estimate as EnQuest moves to equal time rota

30/07/2015

The outcome of a consultation by EnQuest into an equal time rota will see the loss of a number of jobs – but less than had been previously estimated. Earlier this year the company revealed it may move to a three on, three off shift pattern in line with a number of other firms including Shell and Chevron. The decision was expected to see a reduction in positions from companies including KCA Deutag, Petrofac and Sodexo.

Oil & Gas

Unions reject OCA proposals over offshore working conditions

29/07/2015

Unions have rejected proposals offered by the Offshore Contractors Association (OCA) for North Sea workers in a move which could increase the chance on industrial action in the North Sea. Both GMB and Unite were balloted on whether to accept a new deal put on the table last month. The result of the ballot from Unite members was 63.5% against and 36.5% in favour. It is understood the union will be consulting with members in coming days following the decision. It is understood GMB voted in favour of the proposals but as the union had fewer members balloted their vote has been outweighed by Unite. The OCA's chief executive Bill Murray said it was "extremely disappointed" by the move.

Oil & Gas

Expro set to review the bonus provision of 200 workers

29/07/2015

An oil firm has announced it is reviewing the bonus provision of 200 offshore workers. Expro is carrying out the review as a result of the ongoing oil price downturn. An Expro spokeswoman said: “The company has communicated with employees to explain the reason for this difficult decision, which is in direct response to the current tough operating environment.

Oil & Gas

SgurrEnergy strengthens Canadian team as it eyes growth in region

29/07/2015

SgurrEnergy has expanded their Canadian base to as it looks to reap rewards from the growing business opportunities in the region. The company has moved into Montreal and Toronto following a recent expansion in San Francisco and California. As a result two new appointments have also been made by SgurrEnergy to help lead the new bases in the country. The addition by the Wood Group firm will build from the existing offices in Vancouver, British Columbia, Austin and Portland.

Oil & Gas

WWF Scotland urges ban on gas extraction from coal

29/07/2015

The company behind plans to extract gas from coal under the Firth of Forth has been accused of trying to “hold Scotland’s environment to ransom”. WWF Scotland has urged the Scottish Government to extend its moratorium on unconventional oil and gas developments to cover underground coal gasification (UCG), a technique that produces gas from underground coal seams. The SNP has also come under pressure from within its own ranks to expand the scope of the ban. It follows the publication of a series of letters from Algy Cluff, chairman and chief executive of Cluff Natural Resources, to Scottish ministers.

Oil & Gas

Chevron to lay off 1,500 workers amidst oil price slump

29/07/2015

Chevron Corp, the second-largest U.S. oil company, said on Tuesday it would lay off 1,500 employees, about 2 percent of its global work force, as it trims costs to offset declining crude prices. Nearly all of the layoffs will be in Texas, where the company has expanded in recent years to develop land in the Permian shale formation, and California, where Chevron is headquartered. Fifty international employees will be laid off and roughly 600 contractor positions will be canceled, the company said in a statement.

Oil & Gas

Russia’s Novatek net profit up 31% to $700M

29/07/2015

Novatek, Russia's No. 2 gas producer, made second-quarter net profit of 41.9 billion roubles ($703 million), up 31 percent year-on-year on stronger sales, it said on Wednesday. Analysts had expected the firm to post 38 billion roubles in quarterly net profit. The company said its revenues were at 112.2 billion roubles, up from 88.4 billion roubles in the same period last year.

Oil & Gas

Letter between oil tycoon and Scottish Government calls for stance on fracking

29/07/2015

Oil tycoon Algy Cluff warned Scottish ministers the day after a moratorium on fracking was confirmed that Scotland could risk losing £250million of investment. The multi-millionaire warned energy minister Fergus Ewing and Alex Neil that including his plans for underground coal gasification (UCG) in the moratorium would have an impact on Cluff Natural Resources (CNR) ability to “operate and invest” further in Scotland. CNR has ploughed ahead with plans to develop Britain’s first offshore UCG project in recent times, despite opposition from environmentalists, who feel the methods used are unsafe and require further testing.

Oil & Gas

Sparrows increases Malaysian presence

29/07/2015

Sparrows Group has expanded into the Malaysian market after forming a strategic relationship with a service provider in the region. The move will see the company work alongside Efficient Technology Sdn Bhd (Eftech) as it looks to treble its business in Asia Pacific over the next five years. Sparrows will offer services including offshore crane maintenance, crane hire, fluid power, inspection and cable and pipe lay products.

Oil & Gas

Total to consult over three on, three off

29/07/2015

Total is set to consult with staff over a potential move to an equal time rota. The decision to communicate with staff regarding a change to a three on, three off shift pattern comes after oil giant Shell confirmed it would be making the move earlier this week. Companies have been considering whether to adopt the shift pattern as they look to make cost savings following the decline in oil price.

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