Oil and gas skills body OPITO is set to become a strategic skills adviser in Cyprus with the opening of new offices in the region. Following discussions with senior Cypriot officials, OPITO has invested in a new office in the country. The Eastern Mediterranean is currently estimated to hold 122 trillion cubic feet of gas in the area. Group chief executive David Doig said: “The recent discovery of natural gas resources offshore Cyprus is a major opportunity to create jobs and opportunities for the island and its people.
Oil & Gas
Antitrust regulators in the European Union have charged Gazprom with abusing its position in Eastern European countries. Earlier this week it was revealed charges could be brought against the Russian energy giant. Now, after more than two years of investigation, the European Commission said the company had hindered competition across countries including Poland and Hunga
ConocoPhillips, the third-largest US oil producer, is exploring the sale of some its North Sea assets in Norway as it seeks to divest overseas operations, two people with knowledge of the matter said. The Houston-based oil and natural gas producer may sell Norwegian assets that are operated by others including stakes in the Aasta Hansteen, Alvheim and Grane fields, the people said, asking not to be identified as the information is private. Conoco, which is running the disposal without advisers, has contacted potential buyers, they said. If sold together, all three stakes may fetch as much as $1 billion, one of the people said. US producers are increasingly offloading overseas assets to focus on domestic opportunities amid a sharp drop in oil prices.
The Dutch Economy Minister has insisted production at the Groningen field will not exceed more than 36.4billion cubic metres this year. Henk Kamp wrote to the country's parliament to confirm caps previously agreed on Europe's largest oil field would remain in place. In February the minister cut first half 2015 production to 16.5 bcm, sending gas prices surging in Northwest Europe. The overall annual target for the year is still to be confirmed in July.
Transocean has appointed NOV's chief financial officer as its next chief executive. The company said Jeremy Thigpen would take up the role, replacing Ian Strachan who had been filling the position in an interim capacity. Mr Strachan, will also retire as the chairman of the board of directors at the end of his term at the 2015 annual general meeting.
Contract drillers Nabors Industries said it has reduced it global workforce by 18% since last year. The company had made the move following the oil price decline and it affect on drilling activity.
OPEC’s refusal to curb output in response to the collapse in crude prices is an attempt to find the most economic price for oil, not an attack on US shale drillers, said Exxon Mobil Corp. Chief Executive Officer Rex Tillerson. The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries is engaged in “a classic price-discovery exercise” after the revolution in shale-oil production turned global crude markets topsy turvy, Tillerson said during the IHS CERAWeek conference in Houston on Tuesday. The 10-month, 48-percent cascade in US oil prices has crushed stock prices, eroded drilling budgets and cost tens of thousands of workers their jobs.
Aberdeen energy service firm XPD8 Solutions has described a new £375,000 contract in west Africa as a "pat on the back" by one of its clients. The six-month deal will see asset integrity management specialist XPD8, which has its headquarters in North Silver Street, move Tullow Oil's existing computer-based maintenance management system to a new software package, Maximo. Once installed, the Maximo system will support planning, scheduling, performance monitoring and reporting of asset integrity key performance indicators for the Jubilee floating production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel offshore of Ghana. XPD8 managing director Mark Cavanagh said: “It is a pat on the back to our team that we have been chosen to work again with Tullow Oil, which is an existing client for us, on what is another significant contract.
Total SA’s chief executive officer is looking at US solar power rather than fossil fuels as an investment for France’s largest oil and natural gas company. “Solar in the US is quite interesting,” Patrick Pouyanne said at a briefing Tuesday at IHS CERAWeek in Houston. “It’s one of the countries, it’s one of the states where you can make money. Here you can be competitive with other forms of energy to make power.”
Azinor Catalyst has acquired a licence in the UKCS (UK Continental Shelf) from Stavanger Petroleum Limited. The licence, P.1946, covers block 15/12a and gives the company a 100% working interest in the asset. The transaction was approved by DECC (Department of Energy and Climate Change).
Nigeria has to raise its gas prices to attract an estimated $55 billion of investment needed to plug persistent local shortages, Nigerian Gas Association President Bolaji Osunsanya said. A government increase of gas prices in August for power plants to $2.50 for 1,000 cubic feet from about $0.50 isn’t enough, Osunsanya, who is also managing director of Oando Gas & Power Ltd., said in an interview in Lagos with Bloomberg TV Africa to be aired Friday. These investments are needed to explore for more gas, set up five processing facilities at about $2 billion each and develop domestic distribution channels, he said. International oil companies, which had been export-focused due to low domestic gas prices fixed by the government, have agreed to sell off $10 billion of assets over the past three years, according to Bloomberg Intelligence. Those assets are largely being taken over by local companies, such as Seplat Petroleum Development Co. and Midwestern Oil and Gas Co. Ltd.
Woodside Petroleum has dropped its option to take operatorship and fund well costs in one of its shared Moroccan assets. The Australian company’s partner, Chariot Oil & Gas, said Woodside had decided against the move which would have given it an additional 25% stake in return. It means Chariot will remain the operator with a 50% interest, while Woodside will retain its current 25% stake and ONHYM will have a 25% carried interest.
Technip's Colombian subsidiary, Tipiel, has been awarded a front-end engineering design and detailed engineering design contract on a lump-sum basis. The deal, which was awarded by the Consorcio Constructor Ductos del Sur, is for the development of a new gas pipeline to transport gas from the Camisea field to Southern Peru. The project was launched by the Peruvian government and consists of more than 1,700 kilometres of 32" gas pipeline.
Amec Foster Wheeler has been awarded a contract by Hyundai Engineering for the design and supply of two 15-megawatt CFB cteam generators for a new power plant in the Phillipines. The company, which did not disclose the value of the awarded, said the generators would be for the power plant's boiler island and provide onsite technical advisory services. Commercial operation of the plant, in the central province of Cebu,is scheduled for the first quarter of 2018.
In a quest to overturn the decades-old restrictions on exporting American crude, the oil industry is seeking the help of an unlikely ally: consumers. ConocoPhillips Chief Executive Officer Ryan Lance wants to convince the public that allowing exports would actually help push US gasoline prices down. Existing policy hurts consumers because, while it keeps U.S. oil prices lower than the global crude benchmark, it doesn’t do much to pass that savings on at the pump, he said. Instead, refiners capable of processing the oil produced by the shale boom profit from lower prices, and then can sell their refined products overseas. “The ban on exports is anti-consumer,” Lance told reporters after giving a speech at the IHS CERAWeek conference in Houston. The industry “needs to educate people that it is better for consumers to be exporting our crude.”
Oil major Chevron is planning to decommission a number of installations offshore Australia. The company said the move is in response to the oil price decline. It includes a number of installations at the Saladin, Cowle, Crest, Roller and Skate fields.
As the oil industry takes stock of Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s $70 billion move for BG Group Plc, one company has more to chew on than most. BP Plc, the UK’s most storied oil producer and prime mover in previous rounds of consolidation, is now thinking what was once unthinkable: that it could be next in the cross-hairs. BP executives are concerned the company is vulnerable to an opportunistic bid, according to people familiar with the situation. In response, they’ve stepped up internal reviews of takeover scenarios and war-gamed defense strategies with advisers from firms including Morgan Stanley, said the people, all of whom asked not to be identified discussing a private matter. Exxon Mobil Corp. and Chevron Corp., the two largest US producers, are seen as the only realistic predators.
UK North Sea gas fields could be forced to shut down if a Russian oligarch ignores a UK Government demand to sell them. Energy Secretary Ed Davey yesterday warned Dea UK its operating licences may be revoked by the UK Government unless owner LetterOne, led by billionaire Mikhail Fridman, sells up within six months. The threat affects five Dea-operated gas fields – Breagh, Cavendish, Clipper South, Topaz and Windermere – and comes as the UK offshore industry is already struggling to safeguard investment and jobs in the wake of a sharp plunge in oil prices.
OAO Gazprom will get an antitrust complaint from the European Union as soon as Wednesday in a two-year-old probe into gas pricing that’s been delayed amid political tension in Ukraine, according to an EU official. The EU, which relies heavily on Russian gas, will send a statement of objections to Gazprom that lays out where regulators see possible violations of competition law, according to the official, who asked not to be identified because the decision isn’t public. The EU was examining whether the company’s contracts unfairly link oil and gas prices and prevent customers from reselling gas. The complaint would be the second in as many weeks for EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager, who escalated a probe into search-engine giant Google Inc. The 47-year-old Vestager said last week that she planned to act “decisively against energy companies that harm rivals” and “block energy flows from one EU country to another.”
The UK Government has decided to revoke North Sea oil field licences owned by DEA, RWE's oil and gas unit bought last month by Russian billionaire Mikhail Fridman's LetterOne, unless the licences change ownership, the energy ministry said today. "The Secretary of State Ed Davey ... proposes to revoke DEA UK's North Sea petroleum licences unless LetterOne arranges for a further change of control of the DEA UK gas fields in the North Sea," the ministry said in a statement.
Proserv and hazardous environment specialist JCE Group are to join forces in the Middle East and Africa. The deal between the firms will allow Proserv to supply JCE’s products and services to the region, as well as providing engineering support Andy Anderson, Proserv’s president for the Middle East and Africa, said the firms had already been working on projects together for at least two years.
Australian oil and gas company Titan Energy has experienced success in its drilling program on Allen Dome. The JT Reese #14 has reached a total depth of 4,390 feet and has been logged to a depth of 3,950 feet.
Petrobas has made a new gas discovery in the Amazon basin. The company said it was made while drilling of well 1-BRSA-1293-AM took place. The site, informally known as Jusante do Aneba, was drillinh to a total depth of 2.040 metres.
Karoon Gas Australia has confirmed its oil discovery in Brazil's offshore Santos basin. The company said it had encountered a 213 metre gross oil column in the Echidna-1 exploration well from wireline pressure data across the Paleocence and Maastrichtian aged reservoir intervals. Karoon managing director, Robert Hosking, said:"The Echidna discovery represents another significant achievement for Karoon. Echidna adds incremental resource to Karoon's discovered Kangaroo oil field which further supports Karoon's ambitions to develop an integrated production hub in the Santos Basin."
GDF Suez said a gas discovery has been made in Algeria. The discovery was made alongside partners including Repsol, Enel and Sonatrach in the Illizi basin. The French company currently holds a 20% licence in the development.