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Europe

Chinese firm invests in East Siberian oilfield

09/07/2015

A small Chinese energy firm has signed a deal with a state-controlled Russian oil company to invest in an East Siberian oilfield project. CEFC China Energy signed the deal with Gazprom Neft, the oil arm of Russia's top natural gas producer, on July 6, according to a statement on the Shanghai-based company's website. The private chemicals and fuel company said it is investing in three blocks holding 1.9 billion barrels of oil in the Baikal project, 90 kilometres away from the East Siberia-Pacific Ocean (ESPO) pipeline that supplies China with Russian oil.

Europe

Romanian prosecutors seize Lukoil assets in probe, report says

09/07/2015

Romanian prosecutors seized assets of Russian oil firm Lukoil worth up to 2 billion euros ($2.22 billion) in an investigation on suspicion of money laundering, a local court was quoted as saying on Wednesday by state agency Agerpres. In October of last year Romanian prosecutors, police and customs inspectors raided the offices of Lukoil near the city of Ploiesti in an investigation into alleged tax evasion and money laundering concerning an estimated 230 million euros. As a result, Lukoil briefly shut down its local refinery.

Oil & Gas

Ithaca sells Norwegian exploration business

09/07/2015

Ithaca Energy has sold its Norwegian exploration business for $60million. MOL Plc bought Ithaca Petroleum Norge for an initial $60million price tag. However, depending on how successful the discoveries drilled on Ithaca Norge's existing licence portfolio between 2015 and 2017 are, MOL could pay future “bonus payments” of up to $30million to Ithaca.

Oil & Gas

Premier Oil cuts operating costs by 30%, closes in on Solan and Catcher first oil

09/07/2015

Premier Oil has cut its operating costs by 30% as a challenging marketplace sees its turnover slide. The firm reported total revenues for the first half of the year topped out at $580million – down from last year’s $885million. The dip triggered Premier to cut its operating costs by 30% - down to $150million. The company credited the sale of the “high cost Scott area in the UK” for the part of the savings.

Oil & Gas

Is the tide turning for drillers?

09/07/2015

Drilling analysts at RS Platou believe oil & gas companies will start to see offshore spending in a more positive light over the coming years

Oil & Gas

BP oil wells to link up on web

Oil giant BP has licensed new software that will link thousands of its oil wells across the globe in an effort to increase standardisation and cut costs. The firm will use systems designed by industrial giant GE to connect its wells to an “industrial internet” giving BP field engineers real-time access to data across all wells. The project will initially be deployed across 650 of BP’s wells, expanding to 4,000 over the next several years.

Europe

Russia’s Rosneft signs preliminary deal to buy into Essar’s Vadinar refinery

08/07/2015

Russia's top oil producer Rosneft has made a significant step in its efforts to expand its global reach by signing a preliminary deal with Essar Group about acquiring up to 49 percent of the Vadinar oil refinery in India. Rosneft, the world's top listed oil producer, has long sought to increase its exposure to the global markets but its efforts have been hampered by Western sanctions over Moscow's role in the Ukraine crisis. State-controlled Rosneft said on Wednesday that it has also finalised a deal to supply 10 million tonnes of oil a year (200,000 barrels per day) to the refinery over 10 years.

Market info

Budget 2015: North Sea workers unlikely to be affected by ‘non-dom’ changes

08/07/2015

A tax expert said North Sea workers are unlikely to be affected to changes implemented to “non-dom” statuses in the UK. The Chancellor George Osborne has revealed the first Conservative budget in almost two decades to MPs with a pledge to press ahead with tax reforms for the industry. He told politicians non-dom status would be abolished for people born in the UK to parents domiciled here.

Oil & Gas

Brazil gives clearance to Shell’s purchase of BG

08/07/2015

Brazil gave the green light to oil major Royal Dutch Shell to buy smaller rival BG, advancing the $70 billion merger, the largest of the past decade, closer to completion in early 2016. Shell is set to become the largest foreign operator offshore Brazil after it buys BG, so the clearance from the country was a crucial step to complete the merger on time. Brazil's competition authority CADE said on Wednesday it had given preliminary approval to the transaction "without restrictions." BG said that if no appeals were lodged or referrals made in the next 15 days, CADE’s clearance would become final. A spokesman for Shell confirmed the approval and the 15-day appeals period.

Europe

In shale-wary France, an attempt to revive former coal region with gas

08/07/2015

France could get the equivalent of 10 years of gas consumption by exploiting the methane trapped in the former coal mines of its deprived eastern regions, a French company running a rare domestic exploration programme said on Wednesday. France, which slammed the door on developing shale gas due to environmental concerns and blocked many exploration permits, has discretely supported efforts by Française de l'Energie, based in the Lorraine region, to exploit so-called coalbed methane. "France is completely dependent on imports, so it's rather interested in seeing we can produce a gas which is clean and near existing infrastructure," said Julien Moulin, head of the company formerly known as European Gas.

Americas

Brazil fire sale from Petrobras to vale seen driving IPO revival

08/07/2015

Brazil has a “For Sale” sign in its front yard. Saddled with debt and an economic downturn, companies from builders to miners are opening their doors to bargain hunters. The government, aiming to win back investors and stave off a ratings downgrade, may back as much as 20 billion reais ($6.3 billion) in IPOs by state-run companies this year. Together, that’s set to help Brazil regain some of the momentum seen in the public offering and M&A markets late last decade, when Brazil was a darling of international investors.

Market info

Budget 2015 live: Chancellor vows to press ahead with North Sea tax reforms

08/07/2015

Chancellor George Osborne has reinforced the Government’s pledge in March to move ahead with tax reforms for the North Sea oil and gas industry. The Government was previously urged by industry leaders to help support production and investment in the UKCS. Speaking before parliament in the House of Commons, the Chancellor said previous promises – including a reduction in the supplementary tax charge from 30% to 20% would continue.

Middle East

Kurds issue oil export threat

08/07/2015

Iraq’s self-ruling Kurds are threatening to bypass the country’s central government and sell oil produced in the neighboring Kirkuk region in a dispute over revenue from crude sales by OPEC’s second-largest producer.

Market info

Budget 2015 live

08/07/2015

The first all-Tory Budget in almost two decades is set to be divisive as further dramatic welfare curbs are included with Chancellor George Osborne promising to "secure Britain's future". The Budget is also set to take advantage of better-than-forecast tax revenue to declare that £12billion of welfare savings will be implemented more slowly than previously thought.

Australasia

Philippine San Miguel unit seeks $400 mln from banks to build power plant

08/07/2015

Philippine conglomerate San Miguel Corp's energy subsidiary is borrowing $400 million from banks to finance the construction of a power plant north of the capital, IFR reported on Wednesday. SMC Global Power Holdings Corp mandated DBS Bank, Mizuho Bank and Standard Chartered for a $400 million, seven-year loan for the construction of a 300-megawatt coal-fired power plant in Bataan province, said IFR, a Thomson Reuters publication.

Americas

Petrobas incidents: Two fatalities after scaffolding collapse and platform fire

08/07/2015

An investigation has been launched after an incident at a Brazilian oil terminal operated by state-owned Petrobas caused two fatalities. Two workers were killed after scaffolding erected on a construction project at the site collapsed at the end of a pier operated by Transpetro, which is the company’s pipeline and shipping unit. It is understood the workers, who had been wearing security belts, drowned during the incident.

Oil & Gas

Amec Foster Wheeler wins Malaysian refinery contract

08/07/2015

Amec Foster Wheeler has secured a new contract for a proposed refinery and petrochemical complex in Malaysia. The win comes from SKS Corporation Sdn Bhd together with Saudi Arabia’s Petromin Corporation and Oceania PTE of Japan. The company remained tight-lipped about the value of the consultancy contract which will is expected to be delivers by an Amec Foster Wheeler team in Readin and Kuala Lumpur.

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