china

Opinion

Opinion: The shale gas revolution – what next for China?

The US shale gas and oil revolution is a key reason behind the current oil price crisis that is now proving such a huge challenge for the North Sea. In the UK, where shale gas exploration is in its infancy, the fracturing of wells (fracking) has become highly contentious and is now a general election issue. But what of China? After all, based on current knowledge, the world’s most populous country also possesses the largest shale gas reserves. And there is production. The Ministry of Land and Resources of the People’s Republic of China (the MLR) published a decision on November 3 last year, following the expiry of the exploration rights of the first of two shale gas bidding areas.

Health, Safety & Environment

China chemical blast prompts army rescue amid safety concern

A plant in southeast China that produces a toxic chemical was rocked by its second explosion in 20 months, prompting a rescue operation by the nation’s army and reviving concerns about the safety of industrial projects. The army deployed 118 soldiers and 25 specialized vehicles after the blast at the paraxylene-making Dragon Aromatics facility in Zhangzhou, People’s Liberation Daily reported on Weibo, a microblogging service. Local residents have been transferred to four sites that are 18 kilometers (11 miles) away from the plant, the Beijing Times newspaper said. Six people were hospitalized, and another 13 were treated for minor injuries, according to the official Xinhua news agency.

Other News

Trial for China’s ex-security chief

China’s once-feared security boss Zhou Yongkang has been formally charged with corruption and leaking of state secrets. The move sets the stage for him to become the highest-level politician to stand trial in China in more than three decades. The long-expected indictment, announced by the country’s procuratorate, followed a lengthy investigation that also had scrutinised Zhou’s former allies in government and the oil industry. Zhou, a former member of the all-powerful Politburo Standing Committee, had been under investigation since late 2013.

Markets

China’s fuel demand to peak sooner than oil giants expect

China’s biggest oil refiner is signaling the nation is headed to its peak in diesel and gasoline consumption far sooner than most Western energy companies and analysts are forecasting. If correct, the projections by China Petroleum & Chemical Corp., or Sinopec, a state-controlled enterprise with public shareholders in Hong Kong, pose a big challenge to the world’s largest oil companies. They’re counting on demand from China and other developing countries to keep their businesses growing as energy consumption falls in more advanced economies. “Plenty of people are talking about the peak in Chinese coal, but not many are talking about the peak in Chinese diesel demand, or Chinese oil generally,” said Mark C. Lewis, an analyst at Kepler Cheuvreux in Paris who has written on how oil companies should broaden their activities to produce all forms of energy. “It is shocking.”

Other News

Former PetroChina chairman Jiang charged with taking bribes

Jiang Jiemin, the former chairman of PetroChina Co., will be prosecuted for charges including accepting bribes and abusing power while he served in the country’s oil and gas industry. Jiang used his positions, including chairman of PetroChina parent China National Petroleum Corp., for personal gain and caused “huge loses” to national interest, China’s top prosecutor said on its official Weibo microblog account today. Jiang failed to explain why his personal fortune and spending were beyond his known sources of income. The anti-graft drive championed by President Xi Jinping has snared more than a dozen senior officials at CNPC and PetroChina, the country’s biggest oil and gas producer, since August 2013.

Australasia

China and India build oil stockpiles to offset risk of disruption in supplies

China and India are poised to fill up their strategic oil reserves this year, taking advantage of lower prices, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA). The two nations are building emergency stockpiles with millions of barrels of crude that mirror the reserves of oil and refined products that the US and its western allies amassed after the first oil crisis of 1973 to 1974.

Oil & Gas

Talks advancing between Gazprom and China

Commercial talks between Gazprom and China have been advancing after the chairman of the Russian energy company’s management committee met officials. Alexey Miller had talks with Zhang Gaoli, the first vice premier of the State Council of the People’s Republic of China took place in Beijing.

Oil & Gas

Wood Mac: China energy demand must be reviewed

Wood Mackenzie said it expects gas demand will recover in one to two years as the key drivers of slower growth are mainly cyclical but power, coal and diesel demand will see their outlook change notably over the long-term due to major structural changes in the economy and policy. Global energy sector will need to identify which changes are structural or cyclical in to determine future demand patterns and opportunities. China’s GDP grew by 7.4% in 2014 compared to 7.7% in 2013.

Australasia

Oil holds losses as China growth fails to spur demand confidence

Oil held losses below $50 a barrel as China’s economic growth failed to spur confidence demand will be enough to eliminate a global supply glut. Futures were little changed in London after falling 2.7% on January 19, the most in a week. China’s gross domestic product expanded by 7.4% in 2014, the slowest rate since 1990, official data show. In the US, where oil production has surged amid a shale boom, the government will let the market “decide what happens” with supply and demand, according to Amos Hochstein, the State Department’s energy envoy.

Oil & Gas

EFC Group completes $2.2million contract with Chinese shipyard

EFC Group has completed a $2.2million deal to design and build a BOP and diverter system for China-based Dalian Shipbuilding Industry Offshore Co (DSIC Offshore). The system is installed onboard DSIC’s new build jack up drilling rig, JU2000E-13. DSIC is supplying the rig to drilling contractor Apexindo, where it will be known as 'Tasha’.

Markets

China imports record crude as price collapse spurs buying spree

China’s crude imports surged to a record in December after a buying spree in Singapore by a state-owned trader and as the government in Beijing accelerated stockpiling amid the collapse in global oil prices. Overseas purchases increased to 30.4 million metric tons last month, according to preliminary data released by the General Administration of Customs.

Markets

Oil extends drop below $45 as US supplies seen worsening glut

Oil extended losses to trade below $45 a barrel amid speculation that US crude stockpiles will increase, exacerbating a global supply glut that’s driven prices to the lowest in more than 5 1/2 years. Futures fell as much as 2.6% in New York, declining for a third day. Crude inventories probably gained by 1.75 million barrels lasweek, a survey shows. The United Arab Emirates, a member of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, will stand by its plan to expand output capacity even with “unstable oil prices,” according to Energy Minister Suhail Al Mazrouei.

Other News

ConocoPhillips and CNOOC face legal action

A group of 21 Chinese firms are taking legal action against CNOOC and ConocoPhillips for losses incurred due to oil spills. The bid, which is calling for more than $22.8million in compensation, was made after there were leaks at the Penglai 19-3 oilfield in 2011. The spills polluted 6,200 square km of water in the Bohaj Bay area and the field was finally sealed in October this year.

Oil & Gas

CNOOC starts production on South China project

CNOOC has started production from gas fields in the South China sea. CNOOC said its Panyu 34-1/35-1/35-2 project, which is located in the Pearl River Mouth Basin of the South China Sea, was producing 21 million cubic feet of natural gas per day. The project consists of the three gas fields with a water depth in the range of between 195-338 meters.

Renewables/Energy Transition

Chinese renewables’ to double

China can double its use of renewable energy from 13% to 26% by 2030, according to research by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). The growth in renewable energy use would represent nearly a fourfold increase in the share of modern renewables between 2010 and 2030. A study, Renewable Energy Prospects: China, prepared by IRENA in association with the China National Renewable Energy Centre, also says China can expand renewables from 20% to 40% by 2030, making it the world’s largest renewable energy power user.

Oil & Gas

China’s gasoline net export hits peak

China’s net exports of gasoline last month rose to the highest rate in more than four years as refiners in the world’s second-largest oil consumer boosted production to a record. Overseas sales exceeded imports by 674,360 metric tons in October, according to figures e-mailed by the General Administration of Customs today. That’s highest since April 2010 and more than double from September, data compiled by Bloomberg show. It’s equivalent to 184,000 barrels a day. Gasoline is used in cars and planes, said the customs agency in Beijing.

Markets

China oil producers face cuts after period of spending

The slump in oil prices is a boon to China as the world’s second-biggest oil consumer. It’s a different story for the country as a major producer. The slide in prices to a four-year low threatens to cut spending, production and profit for the country’s oil companies including PetroChina Co (857) Brent, the global benchmark, has fallen 26% this year to below $83 a barrel. The decline, amid signs that global supply is outpacing demand, is pressuring profits from oil extraction across the globe. After a flurry of acquisitions and spending that’s stretched the balance sheets of Chinese oil companies, the country will also have a diminished appetite for deals, according to Sanford C Bernstein & Co.

Oil & Gas

CNOOC strikes first oil in South China Sea

CNOOC has struck its first oil in the South China Sea. The corporation has a 100% interest in the Enping 24-2 oilfield, which is located in the Pear River Mouth Basin of the South China Sea, and has a water depth of 86-96 metres.