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Oil & Gas

Analysis: Reforms needed in Nigeria or oil production could falter

16/07/2015

Oil production in Nigeria is forecast to falter due to underinvestment according to analysis from research and consulting firm GlobalData. Despite more than 37 billion barrels remaining in proven reserves the country faces challenges with need for reform and transparency to reverse this trend. However Young Okunna, an upstream analyst covering Sub-Saharan Africa, said Nigeria’s gas sector could be rejuvenated by capitalising on the chance to rebuild investor confidence following the election of President Muhammadu Buhari.

Oil & Gas

Mexico auction: First phase sees only two successful bids

15/07/2015

The first round of the historic opening into Mexico's crude market has closed with only two successful bids. A total of 14 blocks had been up for grabs in the landmark opportunity for companies looking to invest in the region. However, as the CNH (Comision Nacional de Hidrocarburos) moved through the blocks on offer it was clear Mexico's big gamble was off to a slow start.

Oil & Gas

Mexico auction: Success in just two of the first seven blocks

15/07/2015

Mexico has successfully auctioned two of the first seven blocks made available in the first of its historic oil and gas tenders. The North American country has opened up the industry, which had long been nationalised, for the first time since 1938. Both of the contracts have been awarded to a consortium of Sierra Oil & Gas, Premoer Oil and Talos Energy.

Oil & Gas

Mexico auction: Oil majors choose to skip round one bidding

15/07/2015

A trio of oil majors have chosen to miss bidding for 14 blocks in Mexico in the first round of its historic auction, which opens the country's energy market up to private investors for the first time in more than 70 years. ExxonMobil, Total and Chevron have all passed on the opportunity which has seen just three successful bids so far.

Oil & Gas

Live: Success for Premier Oil consortia but just two blocks sold in Mexico auction

15/07/2015

Mexico has opened up its historic bid for shallow-water blocks in the first opportunity for private investors in more than 70 years. The country's regulator CNH (Comision Nacional de Hidrocarburos) had been calling for bids above the minimum 40% of pre-tax profits required by the government. To recap - Of the nine blocks so far, just two have been successful with a consortia of Sierra Oil & Gas, Premier Oil and Talos Energy winning both.

Oil & Gas

Sempra Energy wins natural gas transportation contract

15/07/2015

Sempra Energy has been awarded a natural gas transportation contract in Mexico by the Comision Federalde Electricidad. The company said the agreement had been signed with its Mexican unit, IEnova (Infraestructura Energetica Nova), through its subsidiary Gasoducto de Aquaprieta. The project will comprise a header facility with a capacity of three billion feet per day of natural gas and a 14-mile pipeline with a capacity of 1,135 million cubic feet per day of natural gas.

Oil & Gas

New test site aims to cut pipeline failures

15/07/2015

A unique test facility that can help identify and prevent potentially catastrophic pipeline failures around the world has opened for business. The $1.5 million Technology Development Centre in Houston was created by the PRCI (Pipeline Research Council International). It will helps enable operators and pipeline companies to carry out real world testing of onshore and offshore pipelines in one place and then assess how equipment will perform in extreme conditions.

Oil & Gas

Lundin wildcat well comes up dry

15/07/2015

Lundin Petroleum said a wildcat well off Norway has come up dry. Well 10/4-1 had been drilled in PL734 around 35km from the Yme field in the southern North Sea. The exploration well, which is operated by Wintershall, had been targeting the Zeppelin prospect.

Oil & Gas

INEOS boss insists Government ‘not against fracking’

15/07/2015

The Scottish Government has given assurances that it is “not against fracking”, according to the boss of a firm which runs Scotland’s largest petrochemical plant. Jim Ratcliffe, the chief executive and chairman of Ineos, which runs the Grangemouth plant, has suggested an onshore shale gas industry could potentially be set up in Scotland within a few years, despite an indefinite moratorium on granting planning consent for fracking - the method of gas extraction. The firm has ambitions to establish a large-scale shale gas industry, having acquired fracking exploration licences across 700 square miles of central Scotland.

Oil & Gas

Det Norske appeals Johan Sverdrup plan

15/07/2015

Norwegian oil firm Det Norske said it will appeal a government decision to give it a smaller stake in the Johan Sverdrup oilfield than it had been seeking. The company revealed their plans as it reported lower than expected second quarter earnings for 2015. Det Norske believes it should have been given a larger share than the percentage proposed by operator Statoil of 11.89%.

Oil & Gas

BHP to write down US onshore energy assets by $2.8billion

15/07/2015

BHP Billiton Ltd., the largest overseas investor in U.S. shale, expects to write down the value of its onshore assets there by $2.8 billion before tax. The gas-focused Hawkville field will account for the majority of the charge, with the remainder an impairment of goodwill from the $12.1 billion acquisition of Petrohawk Energy Corp. in 2011, the Melbourne-based producer said Wednesday in a statement.

Oil & Gas

Soldier turned math wonk shaking up world of commodity trading

15/07/2015

A former U.S. special-operations soldier turned math wonk is shaking up the world of commodity trading. Since leading a management takeover at Castleton Commodities International LLC almost three years ago, Chief Executive Officer William Reed has been on a buying spree backed by hedge funds and billionaires. Two months after acquiring Morgan Stanley’s oil business, Reed has made Castleton among the world’s biggest independent energy traders.

Oil & Gas

Iran deal exacerbates Norway’s oil risks as supply set to swell

15/07/2015

Norway’s oil industry, already struggling after crude prices collapsed last year, is being dealt another blow as an Iranian nuclear deal promises to boost global supply. “For Norway’s offshore production, it’s not that positive,” Thina Saltvedt, an oil analyst at Oslo-based Nordea Markets, said by phone on Tuesday. “Companies on the Norwegian shelf will face tougher competition because costs must be reduced even further to be competitive internationally.”

Oil & Gas

North Sea operators to shut-in assets early, analyst warns

North Sea operators are expected to shut in assets early adding costs to those remaining, an analyst has warned. Fiona Legate, a research analyst at Wood Mackenzie, has said that it is likely more firms will follow in the footsteps of Fairfield Energy, which recently announced it would start decommissioning its Dunlin field five years early due to the impact of low oil prices.

Oil & Gas

UKOOG backs shale gas report

15/07/2015

Onshore oil and gas body UKOOG (United Kingdom Onshore Oil and Gas) has welcomed a report from a task force on Shale Gas which has assessed the impact on local environment. It comes after Lord Chris Smith admitted his report on the local and health impacts of the industry revealed it still faces an "uphill struggle" for public acceptability. A number of recommendations have been made around practices used by companies in the UK including seismic modelling, full chemical disclosure and the use of green completions at production.

Oil & Gas

UK fracking report: Still a long way to go for public acceptability

15/07/2015

Fracking faces an “uphill struggle” for public acceptability, Lord Chris Smith has admitted as his shale gas task force published a report on the local environment and health impacts of the industry. The task force said shale gas extraction could be safe for the local environment and people’s health in the UK if provisions were in place and regulated to prevent larger earthquakes, water contamination, gas wells leaking and methane pollution. The second interim report by the task force called for full disclosure to the public of the chemicals used in the process, to reassure people it is safe, and independent monitoring and regulation to make sure wells do not leak to prevent water contamination.

Oil & Gas

Mexico licensing auction: Too little, too late?

15/07/2015

Mexico may have missed the mark in opening up its energy market to foreign investors as the oil price decline continues to hit, according to a leading expert. Derek Leith, UK head of oil and gas taxation at EY, said the fall in oil price may be a deciding factor in the historic auction for 14 licences in the South American country. Mexico has made the bold move as its rebounds from a decade long decline in oil production. It is estimated there has been an overall loss in that time of around a million barrels of oil per day.

Oil & Gas

Brazilian police target politicians suspected of taking Petrobas bribes

14/07/2015

Brazilian police carried out their first search and seizure operations involving politicians suspected of taking bribes in a scandal involving state-run oil firm Petrobras on Tuesday, local media and prosecutors said. Senators Fernando Collor de Mello and Ciro Nogueira are among the names being investigated in the 16th round of the probe, dubbed "Politeia", TV Globo and newspaper O Estado de S. Paulo said. A total of 53 search and seizure operations were carried out in order to prevent evidence from being destroyed, according to statements from the police and federal prosecutors.

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