• Home
  • GIF Energy Tracker

GIF Energy Tracker

GIF Energy Tracker

2022
October 27, 2022

Saudi Aramco launches $1.5 billion fund, says energy transition plan flawed

Saudi Aramco launched a $1.5 billion fund to support an inclusive global energy transition, as the switch from hydrocarbons could take decades, Saudis announced. These investments take place amid criticisms from SaudI Arabia and OPEC+ criticisms that there is an overall underinvestment in energy transitions. As of today, the current transition plan is flawed, and today alternatives are not ready to shoulder a heavy load of the growing energy demand and therefore we need to work in parallel until alternatives are ready, ARAMCO CEO claims. This new sustainability investment will target specific ventures globally, such as carbon capture and storage, greenhouse gas emissions, as well as hydrogen, ammonia and synthetic fuels. OPEC+ countries will continue to invest in these sectors, and hope that this sparks involvement from fuel-demanding countries worldwide.

October 27, 2022

India’s Russian oil binge sends Middle East imports to 19-month-low

India has been receiving Russian oil in larger quantities than from Middle East imports, setting the record for a 19 month-low. While India’s overall oil imports in September fell to a 14-month low of 3.91 million barrels per day (bpd), their Middle East imports specifically decreased to 2.2 million bpd. This is in contrast to their Russian imports surged to an all-time high of 23% from 19%, reaching about 896,000 bpd. These imports are amid sanctions placed on India by the United States. One can interpret this cooperation as a statement by India, that they are not bound to any specific sources for their fuel.

October 27, 2022

OMV and ADNOC sign MoU in presence of UAE President

OMV and ADNOC have signed agreements to explore new partnerships in deliveries for LNG, the signing taking place in front of UAE and Austrian officials. OMV is seeking to provide Austria with more energy security amid recent conflicts. While the two companies work together on many other exploration and investment projects, this deal will further cement ties between Austria and ADNOC.

October 27, 2022

Shell sees ‘robust’ profits

Shell disclosed on Thursday that the income attributable to its shareholders in the third quarter of 2022 totalled $6.7 billion compared to $18 billion in the second quarter of 2022. The decrease in income is attributable to lower LNG trading and optimisation results, lower chemicals and refining margins, as well as higher underlying operating expenses, partly offset by increased volumes from higher-value barrels in deep water. We can also infer that profits and production decreased in the third quarter due to the derecognition of Salym in Russia and unscheduled deferments.

October 26, 2022

G7 price caps add new uncertainties to market: Aramco CEO

G7 and the EU have agreed upon Russian export restrictions and price caps which Aramco CEO claims will add more uncertainties to the market. These price caps are placed on Russian oil barrels at a yet to be determined price, as a way of minimizing the profits Russia can draw from crude sales, and which help fund the war in Ukraine. However, this will cause an issue for European energy reserves as they have to find new sources for oil imports and increase tensions with Russia. These sanctions will create more energy instability as the demand for crude rises.

October 26, 2022

Shell unveils £8.1bn profits in another monster quarter of trading

Shell has reported third quarter profits of £8.1bn ($9.45bn) with cash flow from operations clocking in at £10.76bn ($12.5bn) for the three months of summer trading. These profits combined with record breaking second quarter profits will result in higher dividends per share (about 15%) for shareholders. However, shareholders must take into account that the company’s net-debt increased to 41.58bn ($48.3 billion) in the third quarter, however this includes the absorption of the Sprng energy debt – after it acquired the Indian energy firm earlier this year.

October 25, 2022

Saudi Arabia in talks with European countries to boost oil exports

Saudi Arabia is in talks with European states over oil and energy requirements, because Europe is experiencing an energy crisis. Previously, Russia was the biggest exporter of LNG to the region but European and American sanctions have limited their exports. Instead, the EU looked to Saudi Arabia who exported 950,000 barrels per day of crude to Europe last month, compared to 490,000 bpd in the same period a year earlier. These talks will likely lead to more EU-Saudi ventures as they look to meet the rise in demand for oil.

October 25, 2022

Oil prices rise on weaker dollar, supply worries

Oil prices rose this Tuesday, despite having fallen more than $1 per barrel. This is because the U.S. dollar index fell during afternoon trade, making greenback-denominated oil less expensive for other currency holders and helping to push prices higher. The IEA executive officer and Saudi energy minister warned that while the energy crisis is currently manageable, countries must brace for a severe shortage of crude oil in 2023.

October 25, 2022

China Imports Record Levels Of LNG And Coking Coal From Russia

Russian LNG imports to China rose by one-third in September compared to the same period in 2021. Their overall imports, however, decreased by 12% in the last month, which is in line with a forecasted decrease in LNG imports for this year. Chinese imports of Russian coking coal, used in steelmaking, nearly tripled to 2.5 million tons last month from 900,000 tons in September last year. Combined imports of thermal coal and coking coal from Russia jumped by 20% year over year in Sept to nearly 7 million tons. We can see that China is taking advantage of Russian sanctions and price caps and are joined by India, who have also increased Russian imports.

October 25, 2022

IEA says developing nations are the No. 1 casualty of the energy crisis

The IEA executive director has warned that developing countries are the most vulnerable to rising energy prices. He further explains that while the United States is the most vocal about production cuts, it is countries in Africa, South America, and Asia who will take the most damage because of higher import prices and unstable currencies. The IMF has forecasted that the higher oil prices will add to a number of economic difficulties that developing countries already face. The IEA director goes further to claim that we are experiencing the first global energy crisis in light of ongoing conflicts and economic standoffs.

October 24, 2022

Wave of LNG tankers is overwhelming Europe in energy crisis and hitting natural gas prices

As a result of sanctions that are placed on Russian exports, Europe has relied on American LNG imports. However, European ports have been overwhelmed by the influx of shipments as they are reaching maximum capacity. There are 641 LNG vessels operating in the world and 60 of them are waiting to discharge their fuel in Europe. These LNG tankers have been idling or slowly sailing around northwest Europe, the Mediterranean, and the Iberian Peninsula. The Europeans have failed to readjust their gas capacity, rendering them unable to use the gas they are receiving. As a result, European gas shortages continue to rise and have reached 93%. Additionally, prices will continue to rise on fuel companies.

October 24, 2022

QatarEnergy announces Shell as second partner in NFS project

Shell has joined Qatar in its North Field expansion which will have two LNG mega-trains with a combined capacity of 16 million tonnes per annum (mtpa). Once completed, this would bring Qatar’s total LNG production capacity to 126 mtpa. These new LNG volumes are being brought to the market at an essential time as the world is experiencing its first energy crisis. Shell’s stake in this new venture will amount to 9.375% out of a total 25% for international companies. The project will begin production in 2026. In total, it will add more than 48 MTPA to the world’s LNG supply by 2027. In an effort to reduce carbon emissions, power for the project will come from the national grid The project will also include carbon capture and sequestration.

October 24, 2022

Qatar energy chief says oil and gas trade should be depoliticized

Qatar Energies CEO has stated that energy trade should be depoliticized and handled in a purely economic context. The forecasted sanctions and price caps on Russia crude could potentially destabilize energy trade worldwide. G7 countries have announced that they are going to cap Russian oil prices by December fifth, which presents a concern for energy politics. Additionally, the CEO has condemned any attacks on energy bases and facilities in light of recent Russian attacks on Ukraines thermal energy plant. These statements make it clear that Qatar is in favor of peace in the region to promote trade and minimize risks to the energy industry, on which they are heavily reliant.

October 23, 2022

Shell selected as partner in the North Field South LNG project

Shell has been selected to participate in the next wave of Qatar’s LNG expansions – the North Field South project (NFS). Shell will obtain a 9.375% participating interest in the 16 Mtpa NFS project – out of a total 25% interest available for international partners. QatarEnergy will hold the remaining 75%.  At the signing ceremony, the CEO of Shell, stated that LNG has a key role in ensuring energy system reliability and that their investments with QatarEnergy will support the energy transition and energy security, two of the most fundamental challenges the world faces today.

October 23, 2022

Iran’s Atomic Energy Agency Says Its E-Mail Server Was Hacked

Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization has said that an e-mail server belonging to one of its subsidiaries was hacked from a foreign country.  The state media report came a day after an Iranian hacking group, Black Reward, claimed on social media that it had hacked the internal e-mail system of Iran’s Nuclear Power Production and Development Company.  The Atomic Energy Organization stated that the move was an attempt at gaining public attention whilst state media claimed that the hacked content contained only routine exchanges and technical messages.

October 23, 2022

Oil climbs on expectations of tight supply as Russia sanctions loom

Oil rose in early Asian trade as expectations of tighter supplies globally ahead of European Union sanctions on Russian oil underpinned prices.  Brent crude futures climbed 54 cents, or 0.6%, to $94.04 a barrel by 0125 GMT while U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude was at $85.56 a barrel, up 51 cents, or 0.6%.  In spite of Xi Jinping securing a third leadership term, analysts are not expecting any significant change in policy direction, including the zero-COVID strategy.  U.S. energy firms added oil and natural gas rigs for the second week in a row as relatively high oil prices encourage firms to drill more.

October 23, 2022

Exxon Mobil to unveil monster profits powered by oil and gas boom

Exxon Mobil is expected to unveil another quarter of monster profits powered by high natural gas prices next week.  It is currently on track for a record annual profit of $54.8bn this year, which would be more than its cumulative earnings since 2018.  The company’s shares have surged to record highs this week, and are up more than 70 per cent to date this year – vastly outperforming market gains from rivals Shell, BP and Chevron.  The share rise has given the fossil fuel producer a market value of $438bn, making it the 10th highest valued public company in the world.

October 21, 2022

Mozambique’s first LNG exports to Europe seen by early November

According to petroleum regulator INP, Mozambique expects to ship its first LNG exports to Europe from the Eni-operated Coral Sul floating plant later this month or early November, in a supply boost for the energy-starved region. BP’s LNG tanker has already arrived offshore northern Mozambique with all of Coral Sul’s annual gas output of 3.4 million tonnes contracted to BP for 20 years on a free-on-board basis.  A sustained violent insurgency inland with links to Islamic State has scared off investors, as French oil major TotalEnergies last year declared force majeure on its $20 billion LNG project amid rising attacks in the north of Cabo Delgado province.  However, according to INP, they are satisfied with the improvement of stability in Cabo Delgado Province and are expecting Total to return by next year.”

October 21, 2022

U.S. LNG Production Declines Despite Robust Demand

Natural gas flows to liquefaction plants along the Gulf Coast of the USA have been on the decline since the start of October, reflecting a decline in LNG production prompted by maintenance and outages.  The average daily volume of gas flows from U.S. fields to the liquefaction trains in the South stood at 11.1 billion cubic feet which is down from 11.5 billion cubic feet for September and further down from the record 12.9 billion cubic feet daily booked in March as demand for U.S. LNG from Europe surged.

October 18, 2022

OPEC+ says growing risk of global recession justifies oil cuts

OPEC+ defended its oil-production cuts, saying they were justified by the growing risk of a global recession.  Oil ministers from Congo and Equatorial Guinea reiterated this defense, while OPEC’s top official said the group had little choice but to take preemptive action.  In the weeks since the meeting, Saudi Arabia and many other OPEC+ members have repeatedly said the motivation for the cuts was purely economic.

October 18, 2022

QatarEnergy expanding in LNG, won’t divert supplies to Europe

According to  CEO Saad al-Kaabi, QatarEnergy is working to expand its gas production and trading operations as global demand surges.  He said it will not divert LNG contracted with Asian buyers to Europe this winter.  Qatar is already among the world’s top LNG exporters and several European states, facing a spike in energy prices and a fuel supply crunch, have been in talks with the Gulf Arab state to reduce their reliance on Russian energy supplies.

October 17, 2022

China To Stop Reselling LNG To Europe

Chinese state-owned energy giants have been recently told by authorities to stop reselling LNG cargoes to gas-starved Europe, in what could be a blow to the European hopes of continuous high inflows of LNG as the winter approaches.  In recent months, Chinese LNG importers have been selling their excess inventories to Europe and reaping big profits from the sales because of lackluster demand in China due to incessant snap city-wide Covid lockdowns and a slowdown in economic growth.  Now, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), China’s top planning body, has told the country’s state-held LNG importers that they should stop reselling LNG cargoes and keep them to ensure Chinese gas supply this winter.

October 17, 2022

QatarEnergy to take full control of solar power firm Siraj Energy

QatarEnergy has agreed to acquire the remaining 49% stake in Siraj Energy in a deal that will boost its total solar power capacity under direct control to 1.675 GW.  Set up in 2017, Siraj Energy is active in financing, building, operating and maintaining solar power facilities across Qatar.  According to Qatar’s Minister of State for Energy Affairs and CEO of QatarEnergy, the agreed buyout is an “important step for QatarEnergy in consolidating its position in the renewables business and in delivering its Sustainability Strategy mid-term target of generating 5 gigawatts of solar power by 2035.”

October 16, 2022

Kuwait appoints new cabinet with Bader al Mulla as oil minister

Kuwait appointed Bader al Mulla as its new oil minister in a new cabinet.  Abdul Wahab al-Rasheed is also appointed finance minister and Salem Al-Sabah as foreign minister.  Earlier this month, the crown prince, who has taken over most of the emir’s duties, appointed Sheikh Ahmad as prime minister in July after some opposition MPs staged an open-ended sit-in to press for a new premier.

October 16, 2022

Opec+ decisions are crucial to market stability, say Omani and Bahraini oil ministries

Oman’s energy minister has explained that Opec+ decisions are based on purely economic considerations and realities of supply and demand in the market. Additionally, Bahrain’s Minister of Oil and Environment, Special Envoy for Climate Affairs, Mohamed bin Mubarak bin Dainah said the decision comes after consensus among all members states in the alliance. These statements are in an effort to clarify that production cuts were not enforced because of geopolitical ties, as suggested by the United States, but were purely done for economic stability.

October 16, 2022

Minister Al Kaabi meets US Energy Secretary

Qatari minister of energy affairs met with the United States secretary of energy affairs Jennifer M. Granholm. The meeting discussed bilateral relations in the field of energy between Qatar and the US and means to enhance them.

October 16, 2022

Saudi king Salman says kingdom seeks stability and balance in oil markets

Saudi King Salman said the kingdom was working hard to support stability and balance in oil markets, including by establishing and maintaining the agreement of the OPEC+ alliance.  He added that his country was a mediator of peace and highlighted the crown prince’s initiative to release POWs from Russia last month.  He also called on Iran to fulfill its nuclear commitments and cooperate with the U.N. nuclear agency.

October 15, 2022

Saudi Arabia, South Africa sign 11 deals to promote investment

Saudi Arabia and South Africa have agreed upon 11 deals to expand their investments in fields of energy, water, green hydrogen, waste diversion, logistics, and aerial survey services. Saudi Arabia’s investment minister praised South Africa and drew comparisons between the two countries to establish a similarity of interests among two “major economic powers” in their respective regions. With the world undergoing constant geopolitical and economic turmoil, strengthening this relationship will provide opportunities for growth in two countries who are rapidly expanding their operations.

October 14, 2022

QatarEnergy acquires solar power Siraj Energy stake

QatarEnergy, will acquire a 49% stake in Qatar Electricity & Water Co.’s state-backed solar power entity Siraj Energy.  This transaction is set to result in Siraj Energy being absorbed within QatarEnergy Renewable Solutions, the state energy firm’s renewable investments arm.  They awarded the engineering, procurement and construction contract to South Korea’s Samsung C&T for two solar PV plants with a total combined capacity of 875MW, in August.  Expected to complete by the end of 2024, the electricity generated by the two plants will be partly used for QatarEnergy’s liquefied natural gas production expansion.  The 2.3 billion Qatari riyal ($632m) contract aligns with Qatar’s goal to generate up to 5,000MW of solar power by 2035.

October 13, 2022

Saudi Arabia issues 52 new mining licenses in August

Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Industry and Mineral Resources issued 52 new mining licenses in August 2022.  In line with Saudi Vision 2030 and the National Industrial Development and Logistics Program, the ministry seeks to protect the mining sector and maximize its value.  It aims to transform the mining sector into the third pillar of the national industry with the mineral wealth in the Kingdom being valued at around SR5 trillion ($1.3 trillion).

October 12, 2022

After OPEC+ Cuts Oil Supplies, Nearly Half of U.S. Voters Support ‘NOPEC’ Bill

Lawmakers are calling on the Biden administration to put pressure on Saudi Arabia after the de facto leader of the OPEC+ slashed crude production by 2 million barrels per day for November, further straining global crude supplies to boost a weakened market.  A new Morning Consult/Politico survey shows that just under half of voters would support the No Oil Producing and Exporting Cartels Act, known as NOPEC, which would allow the Justice Department to sue OPEC+ members and companies under antitrust violations. Facing higher gasoline prices, Democratic lawmakers have also offered myriad legislative options for handling Saudi Arabia’s defiance, including a potential pause or termination in arm sales to the kingdom and the removal of military support from Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

October 12, 2022

Rockets target Khor Mor gas field in Iraq’s Kurdistan, operations not affected

At least eight Katyusha rockets were fired at the Khor Mor gas field in Iraq’s Kurdistan region, but according to the Head of Foreign Media Affairs for the Kurdistan regional government, the attack did not result in casualties or affect the operations.  Khor Mor is in the Sulaimaniya region of northern Iraq and was attacked previously.  While no group has claimed responsibility for the previous series of attacks on Khor Mor, Kurdish officials said publicly they believed they were carried out by Iranian-backed militias.

October 12, 2022

Dubai’s Yellow Door Energy raises $400m in new funding as it plans expansion

Renewable energy developer Yellow Door Energy has raised $400 million in a new funding round led by British private equity company Actis, the Dubai company’s largest stakeholder, as it plans expansion into new markets.  The World Bank’s International Finance Corporation (IFC), Japan’s Mitsui, and Saudi Arabia’s Arab Petroleum Investments Corporation (Apicorp), also increased their shareholding in Yellow Door Energy, which continues to develop sustainable energy projects in the Middle East and Africa.

October 11, 2022

Putin says Russia not working ‘against anyone’ in energy markets

Vladimir Putin said that Russia was not working against anyone on energy markets and was seeking a balance between oil supply and demand, a week after Washington criticized a decision by OPEC+ to steeply cut oil production.  Speaking with President Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan of the UAE, Putin said Russia aimed to create stability on energy markets and ensure that supply and consumption were balanced.  He stated that they are actively working within the framework of OPEC+.

October 11, 2022

Arabian Drilling set to raise over $700 million in IPO

Arabian Drilling Company, said it will price its initial public offering at 100 riyals a share and is set to raise 2.67 billion riyals ($710.58 million).  The final price is at the top end of a price range announced last month, which would value it at 8.9 billion riyals.  The deal is the latest in a string of IPOs from the Gulf that has continued this year in defiance of global market trends.  The retail subscription period will start on Oct. 18 and end the following day. The final allocation of shares will be announced on Oct. 25 and the first day of trading is to be determined.

October 10, 2022

Iran racing to expand enrichment at underground plant, confidential IAEA report shows

According to  a confidential UN nuclear watchdog report, Iran is rapidly expanding its ability to enrich uranium with advanced centrifuges at its underground plant at Natanz and now intends to go further than previously planned.  While indirect talks between Iran and the United States on reviving the 2015 Iran nuclear deal have stalled, Iran has bought an ever larger number of advanced centrifuges that the deal bans it from using to produce enriched uranium.  Iran has also quickly completed the installation of seven cascades that were either not finished or at a very early stage of installation on Aug. 31.

October 9, 2022

Saudi Aramco to keep full oil supplies to North Asia in Nov despite OPEC+ cuts

According to sources, Saudi Aramco has told at least five customers in North Asia they will receive full contract volumes of crude oil in November.  The full supply allocation comes despite a decision by OPEC+, to lower their output target by 2 million barrels per day.

October 6, 2022

Iraq and Jordan launch power grid connection project

The Iraqi prime minister and his Jordanian counterpart have established the foundation for an electricity grid interconnection project aimed at tackling Iraq’s chronic power shortage. The project is part of a larger plan to establish a pan-Arab power market by connecting the Gulf Cooperation Council, comprising Bahrain, the UAE, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Oman, with Egypt, Jordan and Iraq. The first phase was scheduled to be completed by the end of 2023 and would supply Iraq with 400 megawatts. This will see Iraq become a transit point for Gulf energy supplies to Europe, within the next two years. In addition, this project will quell the protests that have risen as a result of a lack of power and rolling blackouts, which have been an issue since the US invasion in 2003.

October 6, 2022

Qatar to inaugurate 800MW solar farm

Qatar is preparing to inaugurate its 800 megawatt solar photovoltaic power plant in Al-Kharsaah in mid-October. QatarEnergy CEO has announced that the project is ready for operation and will be one of the world’s largest solar power plants. It is projected to supply about 10% of the country’s energy, giving substantial relief to gas producers. Qatar’s solar power goal is to reach 5GW by 2035, and are expected to sign project deals with three partners to further develop the north field. 

October 5, 2022

OPEC+ nations agree to cut oil production to boost sliding prices

OPEC+ agreed to cut its collective output limit by 2 million barrels a day in an effort to stabilize the sliding oil prices. This is the biggest cut in production since 2020, but will have a smaller effect on global supplies than the projections suggest. OPEC wants prices to be at $90 per barrel, and Many member countries have based their 2023 budgets on that price, and “it would destabilize some economies” if that weren’t to happen. The US and Biden administration are not  in agreement with this decision and plan to release an additional 10 million barrels of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve in November, and to protect American consumers and energy security.

October 5, 2022

UAE Says Oil Major Shell Is Helping Plan Its Net-Zero Push

UAE and Shell have agreed upon a plan that will reach net-zero emissions by 2050. This is an important step to limiting emissions in the Gulf region and shift towards cleaner energy solutions. UAE is set to host next year’s COP28 climate summit, where it has pledged to make oil majors feel welcome. Further cooperation with major oil companies will advance the clean energy dialogue rather than antagonizing them. The oil producers felt unwanted at the last summit, but, UAE hopes to establish a productive dialogue.

October 4, 2022

Multiply Group acquires 80% of International Energy Holding

Abu Dhabi-based holding company Multiply Group has acquired 80 percent of International Energy Holding LLC. Through this new venture, Multiply Group is planning to continue expansion and investments in energy and utilities. IEH owns a PV power plant with a capacity of 1,347.734 megawatt peak/1,000 megawatt electric in Konya’s Karapinar region. This facility alone will meet the annual electrical needs of approximately 2 million people when it is completed in 2023. Additionally, IEH also owns wind farms in Turkey which they plan on expanding, and secures IEH position as a leading clean and renewable energy company.

October 4, 2022

Saudi Cabinet signs off agreement with UK over energy expertise

Saudi Arabia and the UK have signed an agreement to share technical knowledge and expertise on energy. Such an agreement is a positive step in western-Saudi cooperation and will accelerate advancements in the energy sector.

October 3, 2022

Houthis Warn Oil Firms To Leave Saudi Arabia And The UAE

Yemen’s Houthis have warned oil companies operating in Saudi Arabia and the UAE  to flee as the warring sides in the Yemen conflict failed to reach an agreement to extend the six-month truce. The constant occurrence of these threats have prompted Saudi and UAE retaliation in the region, creating a conflict of multiple interests. Houthi rebels accuse the Yemen government of siphoning $13 billion of the country’s oil funds in the last 5 years to other states and that another $180 million in looted oil left the country on a Greek oil tanker in August. The Yemen government is trying to maintain control of their assets while the UN Special Envoy calls on the parties to maintain calm and refrain from provocations or any actions that could lead to an escalation of violence.

October 3, 2022

Refiners Expect Saudi Arabia To Raise Oil Prices For Asia In November

Saudi Arabia may raise the prices for its crude export grades to Asia next month in response to signs of recovering crude demand in one of its biggest markets and the new batch of fuel export quotas issued by Beijing. As a result of this higher demand, Saudi Arabia’s official selling prices could rise by $0.25 per barrel for the flagship Arab Light crude. The new quotas suggest higher near-term demand for crude but, on the other, refining margins have sunk after the announcement of the new quotas in anticipation of a flood of new fuel supply. Experts believe that this will lead to a moderate increase in Saudi prices.

October 2, 2022

Qatar Investment Authority invests $2.43bn to accelerate RWE’s green energy strategy

The Qatar Investment Authority has agreed to invest $2.43 billion in Germany’s largest power producer RWE AG, to help it buy US firm Con Edison Inc’s Clean Energy Businesses subsidiary for $6.8 billion. This venture means the German company is expected to become one of the major players in the US renewable energy sector. The transaction will nearly double RWE’s US renewables portfolio to more than 7 gigawatts and grow its regional project pipeline by 7 GW to more than 24 GW. Following the takeover, solar will account for 40 percent of RWE‘s US portfolio, up from 3 percent now. This is a great step in the renewable energy market and Qatar’s involvement cements their support for renewable energy initiatives.

October 1, 2022

US Sanctions Indian Company for Iran Oil Deal

The United States has imposed sanctions on an Indian company for buying oil and petrochemical products from Iran. This is the first time and Indian entity has been directly sanctioned by the US and is a statement about relationships going forward. These sanctions targeted Iranian brokers in India, Hong Kong, and UAE. India has made it clear that they are allowed to buy oil from whomever they decide to purchase oil from, regardless of US interests.

September 29, 2022

Qatar joins IAEA board of governors

Qatar has been elected for membership of the board of governors of the International Atomic Energy Agency for 2022-2024. This will give Qatar oversight power in policy-making bodies, reviews and approves budgeting, operational programs, safeguards agreements and safety standards. This inauguration is in lieu of Qatar’s recent approach to the peaceful use of nuclear power and the responsible development of a nuclear program. Qatar is committed to supporting the IAEA’s activities promoting the peaceful use of nuclear power, preventing the spread of nuclear weapons, and facilitating member states’ access to peaceful nuclear technology. This will further emphasize the use of soft power and potentially lead to a peaceful direction when discussing nuclear programs.

September 29, 2022

Abu Dhabi Power Transmission Project signs $3.2b financing

Abu Dhabi Offshore Power Transmission Company has secured more than $3.2 billion in financing with export credit agencies and banks for an offshore electricity transmission project. The financing will be used to connect two offshore ADNOC facilities to Abu Dhabi’s onshore grid. Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) provided $1.201 billion for the direct current transmission project. The remaining $2 billion was financed by Export-Import Bank of Korea, Mizuho, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation , BNP Paribas Fortis and Standard Chartered. This project is in line with the JBIC’s requirement to cut carbon emissions to net zero by 2050. This will establish greater cooperation between UAE and Asian states, as well as reduce emissions from oil production.

September 26, 2022

Kuwait in process of purchasing new gas-fired power plants

Saudi Arabia and Kuwait are in the process of purchasing new gas-fired power plants, because the importance of renewable energy sources will increase over time although fossil fuels – mainly gas – remain the dominant energy source generating power in the Gulf countries, reports Al-Anba daily. This new venture will maintain the strength of Saudi Arabia and Kuwait in the market while countries like Dubai and Oman, which suffer from a shortage of gas supplies, have already announced that they will not construct new gas-fired power plants.

September 25, 2022

Germany inks LNG deal as chancellor visits Gulf to secure energy

German utility RWE has signed a deal with Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) to deliver liquefied natural gas to Europe’s largest economy by the end of December. This is an attempt by Germany to lessen their dependence on Russian gas and deepen their ties with the Gulf states. The cargo to be delivered this year by ADNOC will be for 137,000 cubic metres of LNG and will be the first LNG to be supplied to the German gas market via the floating LNG import terminal at Brunsbüttel near Hamburg. This venture marks the shift of European dependence on Russian gas to new partnerships with Gulf states.

September 25, 2022

ADNOC, TAQA close $3.8bn deal for clean energy, decarbonization

Abu Dhabi National Oil Co., and Abu Dhabi National Energy Co., known as TAQA, have finalized a deal for the construction of a $3.8-billion strategic project to power and decarbonize ADNOC’s offshore production operations. A Korean (KEPCO) led coalition with France and Japan will  build, own, operate and transfer its high-voltage direct current sub-sea transmission network in the Middle East and North Africa region. KEPCO holds a 40 percent stake in the operation while ADNOC and TAQA each hold a 30 percent stake. After 35 years, the rights to the project will fully go to ADNOC. Construction will start this year and operations will begin in 2025. Abu Dhabi has once again demonstrated its ability to successfully structure and close a bold and progressive transaction that will help secure our low-carbon future as we intensify our efforts to decarbonize our operations.

September 24, 2022

QatarEnergy signs deal with TotalEnergies for North Field South expansion

TotalEnergies will invest around $1.5 billion in the planned expansion of Qatar’s liquefied natural gas capacity to meet the demand of “hungry European countries”. This deal comes at a time when Europe is aiming to lessen their dependence on Russian gas, in light of the conflict. As Qatar’s capacity increases, it solidifies its position as the world’s top LNG exporter. The french company TotalEnergies is eager to continue this expansion as the world’s demand for LNG increases.

September 23, 2022

GCC banks returning to pre-COVID-19 levels amid higher oil prices: S&P Global

Gulf Cooperation Council banks are returning to form after a strong first half of 2022, with earnings for most of them reaching almost pre-pandemic levels by the end of the year, according to S&P Global Ratings.  This optimism is spurred by high oil prices, rising interest rates, supporting the banks’ creditworthiness, along with new public-sector-backed projects.  GCC banks face a less certain 2023, with expectations of lower oil prices and risks to economic growth in the US and Europe.

September 22, 2022

Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant Unit 3 Star-up accelerates achievement of UAE net zero 2050

The Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC) announced that its operating and maintenance subsidiary, Nawah Energy Company (Nawah) has successfully started up Unit 3 of the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant, located in the Al Dhafra Region of Abu Dhabi.  The start-up of Unit 3 has been achieved one year after the start-up of Unit 2, with the next key milestone being the connection of Unit 3 to the national electricity grid in the coming weeks.  Unit 4 is in the final stages of commissioning prior to completion of construction.  When fully operational, the Plant will prevent 22.4 million tons of carbon emissions every year.

September 21, 2022

Qatar Says Talks With Germany on LNG Contracts Ongoing

Qatar and Germany are continuing to discuss supplies of natural gas, as Europe tries to reduce its dependency on Russia for the fuel.  The Qatari Foreign Minister  confirmed that There are negotiations taking place between Qatar Energy and commercial entities in Germany although it’s not yet clear when state-controlled Qatar Energy and German companies will sign contracts.  It has been reported that the talks were complicated by Qatar wanting to sign longer-term agreements than Germany, which wants to wean itself off gas and other fossils eventually as part of the energy transition.

September 21, 2022

Saudi Aramco awards $40m steel pipes contract to homegrown producer

Aramco has awarded a deal worth $40 million to Saudi Steel Pipe Co. for the supply of oil and gas steel pipes.  Saudi Steel Pipe expects to see financial impact from its new order in the second and third quarters of 2023.  In May, the pipe producer signed a 10-month contract worth SR97 million with Saudi Aramco to supply the latter with oil and gas steel pipes.  In June it won a contract worth SR58 million to supply Aramco with steel pipes for oil and gas extraction.

September 20, 2022

Abu Dhabi’s Mubadala Energy makes new gas discovery in Malaysia

Abu Dhabi-based Mubadala Energy has announced it has made a discovery of a new gas reservoir off the coast of Sarawak province, offshore Malaysia. The oil and gas unit of Mubadala Investment Co. said its early analysis suggests a significant gas column of over 110 meters within the pinnacle carbonate reef reservoir.  Since Mubadala Energy’s entry into Malaysia in 2010, it has made six gas discoveries with a success ratio of 75 percent.

September 20, 2022

German utilities close to long-term LNG deals with Qatar

German utilities RWE and Uniper are reportedly close to striking long-term deals to buy liquefied natural gas (LNG) from Qatar’s North Field Expansion project to help replace Russian gas.  Talks between Germany and Qatar have been fraught with differences over key conditions such as the length of contracts and pricing.  Europe’s biggest economy aims to replace all Russian energy imports by as soon as mid-2024.  While supply deals with Qatar would be positive for Germany, they would not offer an imminent solution to Berlin’s energy crisis as the vast North Field Expansion project is not expected to come online before 2026.

September 19, 2022

UAE said to accelerate plan to increase its oil production capacity

The United Arab Emirates is reportedly accelerating a plan to raise its oil production capacity as it tries to cash in on its crude reserves before the world transitions to cleaner energy.  Adnoc wants to be able to produce 5mn barrels a day by 2025, sooner than a previously disclosed aim of 2030.  Adnoc has asked international companies that are partners in its oilfields to raise their long-term production levels by 10% or more.  If the UAE is successful in reaching the 2025 goal, it may try to boost its capacity further to 6mn barrels daily by the end of the decade.

September 19, 2022

Oman’s OQ Settles On BofA for $800 Million Gas Pipeline IPO

OQ reportedly settled on Bank Muscat and Bank of America Corp. to advise the initial public offering of its gas pipeline units as the sultanate kickstarts its privatization program.  According to insiders who spoke to BNN Bloomberg anonymously, the IPO of OQ Gas Network could raise $800 million, adding that the company had communicated a possible dual listing in Saudi Arabia and Muscat.

September 19, 2022

Crude falls; Kuwait’s oil output over 2.8m bpd

Oil fell by nearly 3 percent, pressured by expectations of weaker global demand and by US dollar strength ahead of possible large increases to interest rates, although supply worries limited the decline.  Brent crude for November delivery fell $2.64, or 2.89 percent, to $88.71 a barrel.  WTI for October dropped 2.96, or 3.48 percent, to $82.15.  Also, Kuwait Petroleum Corporation’s CEO said that the Gulf state currently produces more than 2.8 million barrels per day of oil in accordance with its OPEC quota.

September 17, 2022

Gulf’s natural gas ambitions are at a tipping point, with 30-50% production gains beckoning

Natural gas has been dubbed a ‘transition fuel’ for years, as its lower emission intensity can offer a set of benefits to a world transitioning to a net-zero world.  The GCC alone accounts for roughly 60 percent of Middle East production and is forecast to increase even faster, by 31 per cent by 2030.  Gas in the GCC and the East Mediterranean regions are poised to transform in the coming decade, driven by higher supply volumes, more infrastructure, and demand diversification. To boost domestic gas demand growth and diversify the economy in the most sustainable way, several countries will increase their gas production by more than 30-50 per cent over the next decade, including Qatar, Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Oman.

September 16, 2022

Kuwait’s Al-Zour refinery to begin exports in last quarter: MEED

State-owned Kuwait Integrated Petroleum Industries Co.expects to start export of refined products from its $16 billion Al-Zour refinery in late October or early November. The refinery is set to be the largest in the middle east and north African region, and will mainly produce diesel, gasoline, and kerosine. Starting international exports at the end of October means a significant raise in Kuwait’s oil revenues.

September 14, 2022

Oil demand set to stop growing in fourth quarter as slowdown bites

The International Energy Agency forecasts a grinding halt to demand for oil as the fourth quarter approaches, however, they believe that demand will steadily grow in 2023. They forecast a demand of 2.1 million bpd because of a foreseen leniency in China’s COVID lockdowns and increased air travel. While rich OECD countries accounted for most of the demand this year, the opening up of China’s economy is expected to maintain demand next year. If China is to reopen as expected, non-OECD countries are expected to cover three quarters of the gains in 2023.

September 13, 2022

Qatar Poised to Award Next LNG Prize

Qatar Energy will name its first partner for the next phase of its 48 million tons per year as part of its expansion. LNG has confirmed that at least one company has already signed a deal and others such as Total Energies, Exxon Mobil, Shell, Eni and ConocoPhillips have won stakes in the project and are all in the running for the phase two awards. Qatar also pitched the expansion to multiple Asian LNG buyers but to no avail. In light of recent Russian sanctions, this project will see Qatar grow their influence on the global markets significantly as they meet demands in Europe. In relation to carbon conscious buyers, The LNG projects will include greenhouse gas mitigation measures, including carbon capture and sequestration and methane leak reduction technology costing more than $250 million. This is a great selling point to carbon-conscious global buyers because it emphasizes the effort made to lower emissions.

September 12, 2022

Worlds largest waste-to-energy project in Dubai now 85% complete

Dubai Municipality announced that 85 percent of Dubai Waste Management Centre (DWMC), the world’s largest waste-to-energy project, has been completed.  With the world’s largest operational capacity, DWMC will process 1.9 million tonnes of waste annually and convert it into renewable energy, generating enough energy to power 135,000 homes upon completion.  Construction of the landmark project began in 2021 in an attempt to raise the UAE’s profile as a global model for sustainable development.  The first-of-its-kind project will convert 45 per cent of the emirate’s municipal waste into renewable energy once complete, with the first phase of the world’s most efficient energy project will be ready by 2023, while the entire project is scheduled to finish by 2024.

September 9, 2022

Aramco tenders Abqaiq plant revamp project: MEED

Saudi oil giant Aramco has invited companies to submit bids for a project to revamp facilities at the Abqaiq oil processing plant. Joining ARAMCO are Nasser Saeed Al-Hajri & Contracting and Samsung EPC Co, Daelim Saudi Arabia Co, Technip Italy, Hyundai Engineering & Construction Co. and Abqaiq plant revamp, all of whom aim to optimize oil production and cut costs by developing the Abqaiq plant.

September 9, 2022

FM meets US special envoy for energy

The Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs in Qatar met Saturday with the US Special Envoy and Coordinator for International Energy Affairs. During the meeting, they reviewed bilateral cooperation relations between the two countries, especially in the field of energy security, in addition to a number of regional and international issues of common interest.

September 8, 2022

Dubai-based firm to build offshore wind farm in UK

Lamprell, an Emirati company, announced a new a wind energy project in the United Kingdom today, signed with the Moray West Offshore Wind Farm in Scotland. Per the deal worth more than $200 million, Lamprell will construct wind turbine pieces for Moray’s offshore substations.  The agreement between Lamprell and Moray follows the United Kingdom launching talks with Gulf states in June toward a free trade agreement.

September 7, 2022

Gulf equities slide on volatile oil; Abu Dhabi gains

Gulf equities ended mostly lower as oil prices, a key driver for financial markets in the Middle East, fluctuated wildly as the market balanced demand worries related to looming recession risks with fears that Russia will halt all oil and gas supplies.  Most GCC countries have their currencies pegged to the dollar and generally follow the Federal Reserve’s policy moves, exposing the region to a direct impact from any monetary tightening by the U.S. central bank.

September 6, 2022

Iran proclaims world needs more of its oil after OPEC+ production cut

Iran’s minister of petroleum Javad Owji said the world needed more Iranian oil, and that his country was ready to play a role in providing it away from politics.  He said, “We have always declared that we are ready to contribute to our role in the supply of oil and oil products and to improve energy security in the world by avoiding politicization of oil and the political use of energy”.  Analysts predict that following a deal markets could be flooded with Iranian oil, providing competition to output from Gulf States and lowering prices.  Iran has an estimated 100 million barrels of crude and condensate in storage that can be released almost immediately.

September 6, 2022

Saudi Arabia cuts oil prices for Asia and Europe as demand cools

State-controlled Saudi Aramco lowered its key Arab Light grade for next month’s shipments to Asian refineries from a record to $5.85 a barrel above the Middle Eastern benchmark – a decrease of almost $4 from September.  The move was largely in line with traders’ expectations and follows a 25 per cent drop in Brent crude futures in the past three months to below $95 a barrel.  It also came a day after OPEC+ agreed to a surprise production cut for October.  Despite signals of slowing consumption in many major economies, the global market remains tight. Many analysts forecast that demand will outstrip supply in the final quarter of this year, especially if Russia reacts to a G7-proposed cap on its oil prices by limiting exports.

September 5, 2022

Crude climbs ahead of OPEC+ meeting; Germany to use windfall tax income to reduce energy prices

Oil prices jumped over $1 a barrel, extending gains as investors eyed possible moves by OPEC+ to cut output.  Germany’s government will use income from windfall taxes to lower end-consumer prices for gas, oil and coal according to  German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in an attempt to mitigate the impact of rising energy prices on its population as part of a 65-billion-euro package.

September 5, 2022

Adnoc announces $548m contract for gas line at Lower Zakum field

Adnoc has announced the award of a $548 million contract to build a new main gas line at its Lower Zakum field offshore of Abu Dhabi.  The award will increase Lower Zakum field’s gas production capacity from 430 million to 700 million standard cubic feet per day (MMSCFD), supporting Adnoc’s plans to enable gas self-sufficiency for the UAE and cater for increasing global energy demand.  The project will be completed in 2025 and it will see the construction of a new subsea pipeline that will run 85 kilometers from Zakum West Super Complex to Das Island.

August 31, 2022

Qatar to build world’s largest ‘blue’ ammonia plant

QatarEnergy will build the world’s largest “blue” ammonia plant, which is expected to come online in the first quarter of 2026 and to produce 1.2 million tons per year.  While conventional ammonia production emits CO2 if it is made with fossil fuel, during the production of blue ammonia any carbon dioxide generated is captured and stored.  According to the chief executive and state minister for energy, the facility, the Ammonia-7 project, will cost $1.156 billion to build and capture and sequester 1.5 million tons of carbon dioxide a year through the manufacturing process.

August 31, 2022

OPEC oil output in August hits highest since pandemic’s early days

OPEC oil output rose in August to its highest since the early days of the pandemic in 2020 as Libyan facilities recovered from unrest and Gulf members raised output to unwind a production cut deal with allies.  OPEC has pumped 29.58 million barrels per day this month, up 690,000 bpd from July and the highest since April 2020.  With many producers lacking the capacity to raise output due to insufficient oilfield investment, the 10 OPEC members managed a 300,000 bpd increase from July and are still pumping far less than called for.

August 31, 2022

Adnoc inks $1.83 billion deals for drilling-related services

Adnoc announced the award of five framework agreements valued at $1.83 billion for Directional Drilling and Logging While Drilling (LWD) to support its efforts to expand production capacity of its low carbon oil and gas resources to help meet the world’s growing demand for energy.  The framework agreements are the largest of such awards in the oil and gas industry.  The awards cover Adnoc’s onshore and offshore fields and will run for five years with an option for a further two years.  Ahmed Mohammed Belajer Al Rumaithi, Undersecretary of the Abu Dhabi Department of Energy, said: “A vibrant low carbon hydrogen production and consumption industry will place Abu Dhabi and the UAE at the global forefront of countries producing green energy.”

August 29, 2022

Oil Prices Hit $104 On New Supply Scare

Oil prices rose early on Monday, extending gains from Friday, with WTI crude up by 2.98% at $96.04 and Brent crude trading at $104, up by 2.98% on the day.  Some OPEC+ producers have signaled support for new production restrictions.  OPEC+ meets on September 5 at a regular meeting, but it’s not a given yet that it would discuss new production cuts.  Another supply concern came from Libya as clashes between rival factions in Tripoli left at least 32 dead and dozens more wounded, stoking renewed concern of a larger military conflict that could choke Libya’s oil exports, again.

August 28, 2022

Oman signed a deal to Develop New Pipeline for Crude Oil Export

The Ministry of Energy and Minerals and Oman Tank Terminal Company (OTTCO), a subsidiary of OQ Group, signed a framework agreement for joint cooperation to develop, build and operate a new pipeline.  It will transfer, store and export Oman’s crude oil from the Ras Markaz crude oil storage terminal in the Special Economic Zone at Duqm (SEZAD).  The agreement enables expansion in the energy sector by meeting the expected growth in SEZAD and the energy industry in Oman. The terminal will provide crude oil handling, storage, import and export services for refineries and petrochemicals downstream projects in SEZAD.

August 28, 2022

Sinopec expects lower overall 2022 refining runs, plans first share buyback

China Petroleum and Chemical Corp, the world’s biggest oil refiner by capacity, said that annual processing volumes for 2022 will fall by 6% from a year earlier after the country’s COVID measures curtailed fuel demand at home.  Vice President Ling Yiqun said that they expect China’s fuel demand to return to a reasonable level of growth in the second half. Sinopec also reported record net profit for the first half of 2022 with Chairman Ma Yongsheng stating that the company will buy back its Hong Kong and Shanghai-listed shares at an appropriate time for the first time since listing over 20 years ago. The company has made efforts to diversify crude oil sourcing, including a small share of purchases of Russian oil in the first six months.  The refiner emerged as the top buyer of Russian Far East crude grade ESPO in May and June.

August 27, 2022

Saudi Arabia’s June fuel oil imports increase 60% annually as supply rises

June fuel imports for Saudi Arabia grew 60% to 307,000 barrels per day in response to high air conditioning demand. This is an annual trend that occurs because of the heat which sees the fuel production nearly double each time. Instead of importing from Russia as usual, Saudi Arabia turned to the UAE, Egypt, Estonia, and other countries as their oil source because of the ongoing conflict with Ukraine. We are seeing a shift in the oil markets where countries are opting to get their oil elsewhere, due to the sanctions and difficulties involved with the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

August 26, 2022

Oil prices rise on signals OPEC might cut output

Oil prices rose, boosted by signals from Saudi Arabia that OPEC could cut output.  Trading was volatile as investors digested and ultimately shrugged off warnings from the head of the U.S. Federal Reserve about economic pain ahead.  The United Arab Emirates became the latest OPEC+ member to state it is aligned with Saudi Arabia’s thinking on crude markets and Saudi Arabia flagged the possibility of production cuts to offset the return of Iranian barrels to oil markets should Tehran clinch a nuclear deal with the West.

August 25, 2022

Oil to rebound to $125 in coming months, UBS says

The price of oil per barrel is projected to reach $125 per barrel because of a decrease of daily production, which reached a multiyear low. The EU wants to eliminate dependency on Russian energy imports in relation to the recent war with Ukraine which will have a significant impact on European economies as Russia supplied the EU with 2.8 barrels per day. The upcoming talks involving a nuclear deal with Iran combined with worrying statements from various leaders is causing an “extraordinary volatility” in oil markets.

August 25, 2022

Global LNG investments to hit $42 billion in 2024

Investments in new liquefied natural gas (LNG) infrastructure are set to peak at $42 billion annually in 2024.  These greenfield investments are 200 times compared to the amount in 2020 when only $2 billion was invested in LNG developments due to the pandemic.  This rise is driven mainly by a short-term increase in natural gas demand in Europe and Asia due to the Russia-Ukraine conflict and the restrictions imposed on Russian gas exports.  Project approvals after 2024 are expected to slow down as governments transition away from fossil fuels and accelerate investments in low-carbon energy infrastructure.

August 25, 2022

QatarEnergy awards US$631m EPC contract for IC Solar project

QatarEnergy Renewable Solutions, has awarded an Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) contract for its industrial cities solar power project (IC Solar) to Samsung C&T.  The contract covers two large-scale photovoltaic (PV) solar plants to be built in Mesaieed Industrial City (MIC) and Ras Laffan Industrial City (RLIC). The plants are expected to start electricity production by the end of 2024.  This project forms part of the strategy to diversify Qatar’s energy resources and to increase the reliance on high-efficiency renewable energy, with a mid-term target of having 5GW of solar generated power by 2035.

August 24, 2022

Kuwait ramps up crude oil production to meet increased demand

Due to the rise in demand for oil, the Kuwaiti oil minister has announced that they will increase crude oil production and are expecting to meet the future demand. This can help stabilize the extreme volatility in oil markets at the moment which is a result of years of underinvestment, oil minister Al-Faris says. OPEC officials claim that the cut in production coincides with Iran’s potential reintroduction into the oil markets with the west.

August 24, 2022

Iran Offers To Help Europe With Oil And Gas Deliveries This Winter

Officials in Iran have noticed European countries such as Germany, who are having difficulties with extremely high energy prices. Iran offered to help with the price pressure by exporting gas to European countries, all while making the case that this was a self-inflicted predicament as a result of US sanctions. Iran has been able to expand its oil exports to countries in Asia and South America, and can be a major support in lieu of the upcoming Russian oil sanctions.

August 23, 2022

Oil jumps nearly 4% on possible OPEC+ supply tightening

Saudi Arabia suggested a cut in oil production, which led to a 4% increase in the price per barrel. The Saudi energy minister said OPEC+ had the means to deal with challenges including cutting production.

August 22, 2022

OPEC+ Is Now Almost 3 Million Bpd Behind Its Production Target

With the gap between overall quota and actual oil production from the OPEC+ members growing for over a year, they eventually produced a reported 2.9 million barrels less than projected in the month of July. A partial reason for this is the staggering oil production of Russia, who is the leader of non-OPEC members in the OPEC+ pact, along with African countries such as Nigeria and Angola. This underperformance may lead to a significant increase in price per barrel.

August 22, 2022

Saudi Minister Says OPEC+ Could Cut Production At Any Time

As a result of spare capacities being severely limited, Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman has prepared the market for a new round of production cuts with an announcement that “OPEC+ could cut production at any time.” This decision is partly due to the forecasted volatility and disconnect in the future oil markets, along with unforeseen sanctions or embargoes. To limit risks, OPEC+ members may cut production following a report that showed members underproduce by almost 3 million bpd in July. A cut in production will have a significant impact world wide and can spark tensions with the United States, who pushed for a higher production.

 

August 20, 2022

Iran to develop oilfield shared with Saudi Arabia in 3 years

Iran is planning a multi-phase project which will allow them to pump oil from a key oil-field which straddles the  maritime border with Saudi Arabia. In addition, Iran plans to open an exploration well in Esfandiar and begin drilling in a disputed location involving Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. This presents a promising sign to those who believe that an open relationship can be created between Saudi Arabia and Iran as they are doing business in previously disputed areas and finding common ground. However, as they find themselves on opposing sides in the Yemen crisis, this may lead to distrust among states.

August 19, 2022

OPEC chief says blame policymakers, lawmakers for oil price rises

OPEC’s new Secretary General says that policymakers, lawmakers and insufficient oil and gas sector investments are to blame for high energy prices, not OPEC.  A lack of investment in the oil and gas sector following a price slump sparked by COVID-19 has significantly reduced OPEC’s spare production capacity and limited the group’s ability to respond quickly to further potential supply disruption.  Oil and gas investment is up 10% from last year but remains well below 2019 levels, according to the International Energy Agency.  The OPEC Secretary stated, “We are not saying that the world will live on fossil fuels forever … but by saying we’re not going to invest in fossil fuels … you have to move from point A to point B overnight”.  OPEC exists to ensure the world gets enough oil, but “it’s going to be very challenging and very difficult if there is no buy-in into the importance of investing”.

August 19, 2022

Oil prices head for weekly drop on global economic slowdown worries

Oil prices slipped as market participants weighed worries about a global economic slowdown, which would dampen fuel demand, against expectations of tighter supplies toward year-end.  Brent crude futures fell 68 cents, or 0.7%, to $95.91 a barrel by 0658 GMT after settling 3.1% higher on Thursday. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude was at $89.81 a barrel, down 69 cents, or 0.8%, following a 2.7% increase in the previous session.  Supplies could tighten again when European buyers start seeking alternative supplies to replace 1.2 mbpd of Russian oil ahead of European Union sanctions which take effect from Dec. 5.

August 19, 2022

Qatar sees 12-fold jump in surplus on energy profit

Qatar witnessed a jump in its budget surplus to 47.3 billion riyals ($12.8 billion) in the first half of 2022, compared to 4 billion riyals in the same period last year, driven by soaring energy revenues.  Oil and gas revenue surged 58 percent to 150.7 billion riyals during the period, compensating the increased government spending on wages and salaries.  The Gulf country is benefiting from Europe’s interest in diversifying its gas supply away from Russia in the long-term.  The International Monetary Fund projected the country’s economy will grow 5.4 percent this year and generate a surplus equivalent to about $45 billion.

August 19, 2022

Middle East Producers Expect To Bank Additional $1.3 Trillion From Oil Exports

The major oil exporting countries in the Middle East are expected to receive an additional $1.3 trillion from oil by 2026, thanks to high oil prices and the global oil market turmoil after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF).  Saudi Arabia is likely to be one of the world’s fastest-growing economies this year as sweeping pro-business reforms and a sharp rise in oil prices and production power recovery from a pandemic-induced recession in 2020. Gross domestic product is expected to expand by 7.6 percent, the fastest growth in almost a decade.

August 19, 2022

Saudi Aramco Confirms Estimated $100B Gas Field Phased Expansion

Saudi Aramco has confirmed a phased development for its Jafurah onshore gas production project with an estimated $100 billion overall investment.  It is expected to produce up to 3.1 billion cu ft per day of natural gas liquids and condensates by the next decade.  Construction of production facilities is in two phases—the first to complete in 2025 and the second two years later.  It represents one of the largest shale gas fields outside the U.S. and holds an estimated reserve of 200 trillion cu ft of gas.

August 18, 2022

Kuwait produces more than 2.8 million barrels per day of oil, KPC CEO says

Kuwait Petroleum Corporation’s (KPC) chief executive said that Kuwait currently produces more than 2.8 million barrels per day of oil in accordance with its OPEC quota.  He also said Kuwait has plans to increase crude oil production whenever the market needs it, but currently the customers of the state-owned corporation still demand the same volumes with no change.  Kuwait produces 650 million cubic feet of gas per day, and plans to increase it to one billion.

August 18, 2022

Kuwait Oil Company aims to increase natural gas production to meet local demand

The state-owned Kuwait oil company aims to increase natural gas production to meet local demand.  Demand for oil and gas returned to its pre-pandemic levels in 2019. In this high prices environment, the company is determined to increase its natural gas production in line with Kuwait Petroleum Corporation’s strategy to meet the domestic demand for energy.

August 17, 2022

Iraq resumes crude exports from Basrah Oil Terminal after 24-hour halt

Iraq has resumed crude oil exports from Basrah Oil Terminal after an oil spill that occurred late Sept. 15 halted loadings from the facility, curbing some 1 million b/d of exports from OPEC’s second biggest producer.  In the coming days, BOC will compensate for lost crude exports by pumping extra volumes so that planned export levels are not impacted.  The terminal has long been a major risk for an oil spill, with the degrading of two ageing sea lines feeding jetties.  In July, it was reported that bulges had appeared at the end of those lines and there were fears of a rupture that could cause a significant oil leak into the Gulf.

August 16, 2022

Kuwait increased oil output by 37,000 barrels per day last August

OPEC said Kuwait continued to raise its oil production levels by 37,000 barrels per day last August to reach 2.810 million bpd.  The average price of a Kuwaiti barrel of oil since the beginning of the year amounted to $106.24 per barrel during 2022, compared to 2021, which amounted to $66.40 per barrel.  OPEC maintained its expectations of strong growth in global oil demand in 2022 and 2023, based on indicators that major economies are performing better than expected despite unfavorable factors such as high inflation. An OPEC monthly report stated that oil demand will increase by 3.1 million barrels per day in 2022 and 2.7 million barrels per day in 2023.

August 16, 2022

Saudis seek green hydrogen commitment from EU

According to the President of the European Council, Saudi Arabia wants the EU to embrace long-term contracts in green hydrogen investment potential, with the UAE also suggesting investing in its renewable energy initiatives.

August 15, 2022

Rystad warns no quick pipe fixes for Iran from Gazprom

Gazprom signed a deal in July to help National Iranian Oil Co. develop Iranian projects, but Rystad Energy has warned Russia lacks the required metallurgical supplies.  As a result of sanctions on their energy indsutries, no European or Japanese supplies can provide OCTG or steel goods to Russia or Iran.  The corrosive nature of Iranian oil and gas reserves requires high-grade piping for extraction, which neither Russia or Iran have the capacity or capability to produce in the short term.  With Iran’s offshore gas fields needing relatively high volumes of these super-specialised grades, it is difficult to see how Gazprom can provide any well assistance to develop these fields quickly.

August 15, 2022

Oil prices fall after weaker than expected US and China data

Brent crude dropped as low as $92.78 a barrel as gloomy reports from the world’s two leading economies added to worries that a slowdown in global growth will hit industrial and consumer demand. WTI slipped to $86.82, its lowest level since before Russia invaded Ukraine.  This came after Chinese economic data showed that retail sales and industrial production rose less year on year in July than Economists had forecast.  The oil markets struggle as weak macro data continues to put downward pressure on them, with this negative Chinese data coming immediately after poor consumer sentiment figures in Europe.

August 15, 2022

Saudi oil windfall tops $65 billion even without dividend hike

The Saudi government’s oil income almost doubled in the second quarter even as state-controlled producer Aramco held dividends unchanged.  Aramco pays a royalty of 80 per cent on Brent crude prices above $100 a barrel, and 45 per cent when oil’s at $70 to $100.  Aramco made payments to the government – its 94 per cent shareholder – of more than $65 billion in the period, up from $35 billion a year earlier.  Saudi Arabia’s crude is still the major source of government revenue and soaring prices are set to give the country its first budget surplus in almost a decade.

August 14, 2022

Aramco 2Q profit at record on high oil prices

As a result of increases in oil prices, sales volumes and refining margins, Aramco’s second-quarter profit exceeded that of ExxonMobil, Shell and Chevron combined.  It broke its quarterly profit record with a 90pc year-on-year jump to $48.4bn in the second quarter, which is more than it made in the first six months of 2021.  The Aramco CEO acknowledged the market volatility and instability during the first half of this year but stated that the company forecast oil demand will continue to grow for the remainder of the decade, “despite downward economic pressures on short-term global forecasts.

August 14, 2022

Saudi Aramco to raise output capacity to 12.3 million b/d by 2025

Saudi Aramco plans to raise its sustainable production capacity to 12.3 million b/d by 2025.  Saudi Arabia claims a current production capacity of around 12 million b/d but Platts Analytics estimates this at closer to 11.5 million b/d.  CEO Amin Nasser stated that in 2026, Aramco should go to 12.7 million b/d before reaching 13 million b/d by 2027.

August 12, 2022

More Russian Oil Offtakers Crop Up in UAE

Russian oil companies are relying more heavily on little-known trading firms domiciled in the United Arab Emirates to market their crude.  One of the attractions for Russian oil exporters is the UAE’s lack of interest in imposing any trade sanctions, as well as low taxation.  Companies based in the UAE are not subject to any of the Russia trade sanctions that were introduced in recent months by the US, EU and Switzerland.

August 12, 2022

Saudi Arabia’s Petro Rabigh Q2 net income surges on higher refining margins

Petro Rabigh’s net profit surged by 93.2% year on year in the second quarter on the back of higher refining margins.  This is due to the fact that favorable market conditions for refined products supported the company’s earnings in the second quarter.  This was driven by the increase in crude oil prices which led to improved margins.

August 11, 2022

OPEC, unlike IEA, sees lower 2022 oil demand growth

 OPEC on Thursday cut its 2022 forecast for growth in world oil demand for a third time since April, citing the economic impact of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, high inflation and efforts to contain the coronavirus pandemic. OPEC in a monthly report said it expects 2022 oil demand to increase by 3.1 million barrels per day (bpd), or a 3.2% decrease to 260,000 bpd from the previous forecast. The IEA raised its forecast by 380,000 bpd to 2.1 million bpd.

August 11, 2022

Iraq to supply Lebanon with fuel for electricity for another year -Lebanese PM

Iraq’s government has agreed to continue supplying Lebanon’s electricity company with heavy fuel oil for another year, Lebanon’s caretaker prime minister said on Thursday. This will alleviate pressure on Lebanon’s struggling power grid. Due to the inability of the Lebanese government to supply subsidized electricity to the people from July 2021- this has caused Lebanon to request  1 million tonnes from Iraq of heavy fuel in exchange for healthcare to Iraqi citizens. 

 

August 11, 2022

U.S. gasoline prices fall below $4 for first time since March

The average price of U.S. retail gasoline fell below $4 per gallon on Thursday for the first time in months, giving some relief to drivers in the world’s largest fuel consumer. The average price of gasoline peaked in June to a record $5.02 per gallon which caused consumer behavior to shift to purchasing less gasoline as compared to during the pandemic in July 2020. 

 

August 11, 2022

OPEC’s Oil Production Rises But Still Well Below OPEC+ Target

OPEC’s total crude oil production rose by 216,000 b/d in July compared to June.  However, the 10 members in the OPEC+ pact pumped just over 25 mb/d in July in spite of quotas to collectively target crude oil production of 26.276 mb/d.  As a result of this, despite raising its crude oil production in July by 500,000 b/day, the OPEC+ group was still well below its collective quota, pumping 2.75 mb/d below targeted output.

August 11, 2022

ADNOC aims production growth with $1.17 bn contract

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) has announced a $1.17 billion contract for the hire of 13 self-propelled jack-up barges.  The five-year contract was awarded by ADNOC Offshore to ADNOC Logistics & Services for the multi-purpose assets that enable rig-less operations and maintenance, enabling enhanced efficiencies.  The ADNOC Offshore CEO said that this will help deliver production capacity expansion offshore and directly support ADNOC’s strategic growth objective of 5 mb/d production capacity by 2030

August 11, 2022

Hyundai Gets $1.5B LNG Order as Qatar Awards Charter to Asian Partners

QatarEnergy has awarded a consortium of four Asian shipping companies a long-term time charter for the operation of seven liquefied natural gas carriers to secure capacity to support the expansion of its LNG operations.  It is the latest in a series of deals as the shipping industry faces a shortage of gas carriers to meet current demand.  This $1.5 billion contract forms part of a long-term LNG $28.7 billion expansion project that seeks to increase annual LNG production and exports from 77 million tonnes to 110 million tonnes, ensuring that Qatar becomes the single largest exporter of LNG.

August 11, 2022

OPEC Downgrades Crude Demand Outlook

OPEC officials have stated, in response to slowing global economic conditions, that it will cut its oil demand outlook by 260,000 b/d from an earlier forecast.  The cartel cited remaining downside risks as a result of A combination of the 40-year high inflation in the United States, war in Ukraine that fuelled an energy crisis in Europe, and lingering pandemic woes in Asia.  OPEC had already downgraded its global economic growth forecasts for 2022 to 3.1% from 3.5%.

August 11, 2022

IEA Says Gas-to-Oil Switching Impacts Forecast

The IEA Oil Market Report (OMR) has found that soaring oil use for power generation and gas-to-oil switching are boosting demand and have subsequently raised their estimates for 2022 global demand growth by 380 kb/d.  However, they have stated that these extraordinary gains, overwhelmingly concentrated in the Middle East and Europe, mask relative weakness in other sectors.  World oil demand is now forecast at 99.7 mb/d in 2022 and 101.8 mb/d in 2023.

August 10, 2022

Iraq’s July oil output rises by around 70,000 bpd, SOMO data show

Iraq pumped 4.584 million barrels per day (bpd) of oil in July, up by 69,000 bpd from June, data from state-owned marketer SOMO, seen by Reuters showed on Wednesday. According to the production figures, Iraq’s output was slightly above its designated OPEC+ quota of 4.580 mln bpd for July. The OPEC+ organization uses an average of secondary source production statistics to establish compliance with output quotas.

August 9, 2022

OPEC+ crude oil output makes biggest gain in five months, but gap with quotas grows

OPEC and its nine allies posted their highest monthly crude oil production rise in five months in July, led by gains in Saudi Arabia and Kazakhstan, the latest Platts survey by S&P Global Commodity Insights showed.The OPEC+ alliance increased output by a substantial 490,000 b/d from June—although that is still short of the 648,000 b/d promised when the group agreed to accelerate their quota increases for July and August to meet global rising demand.

August 8, 2022

U.S. crude, gasoline inventories seen lower last week

U.S. crude oil and gasoline stockpiles likely fell last week, while distillate inventories were unchanged, a preliminary Reuters poll showed on Monday.Crude inventories increased by 4.5 million barrels from July 29 to 426.6 million barrels, the EIA said, compared with analysts’ expectations in a Reuters poll for a 600,000-barrel decrease.

August 4, 2022

OPEC Sec Gen says we should tread a fine line as not to consume all oil reserves

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) should tread a fine line so as not to consume all oil reserves, the Organization’s Secretary General Haitham al-Ghais told Al-arabiya TV on Thursday. The Secretary General also stated that the increase of 100,000 barrels per day was to test the reaction of the oil market.

August 4, 2022

Oil prices hit lowest since Ukraine invasion amid recession fears

Global oil prices dropped on Thursday to their lowest levels since before Russia’s February invasion of Ukraine, as traders fretted over the possibility of an economic recession later this year that could torpedo energy demand. Benchmark Brent crude futures settled down $2.66, or 2.75%, at $94.12, the lowest close since Feb18. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures settled down $2.34, or 2.12%, at $88.54, the lowest close since Feb 2. This decrease in oil prices is beneficial to consumer nations such as the United States and territories within Europe because of rapid inflation and limited supplies. 

 

August 4, 2022

Exclusive: Saudi, UAE save oil firepower in case of winter supply crisis

OPEC leaders Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates stand ready to deliver a “significant increase” in oil output should the world face a severe supply crisis this winter, sources familiar with the thinking of the top Gulf exporters said. There are no specific quantities which have been agreed upon, but Saudi Arabia, the UAE and some other OPEC members possessed around 2.0-2.7 million bpd of spare production capacity, the source claimed.

August 4, 2022

Saudi Arabia sets Sept crude prices to Asia at record high

Saudi Arabia, the world’s top oil exporter, raised September crude oil prices for Asian buyers to record high levels despite falling refining margins. Refiners have been concerned that a further hike in crude oil prices could prompt refineries to trim output to manage their balance sheets.Saudi’s OSPs also came after OPEC+ agreed to raise its oil output goal by 100,000 barrels per day from September, although the market saw the increase as too small to have any meaningful impact on the supply.

August 3, 2022

OPEC+ agrees to raise September output target by 100,000 bpd

OPEC+ has agreed to raise its September oil output targets by 100,000 barrels per day, an OPEC+ source said.

August 3, 2022

OPEC+ might have to raise oil output so market doesn’t overheat, Kazakhstan says

OPEC+ is set to raise its oil output goal by 100,000 barrels per day, an amount analysts said was a setback to U.S. President Joe Biden after his trip to Saudi Arabia to ask the producer group’s leader to pump more to help the United States and the global economy. The increase is minimal at a negotiated amount of only 0.1% following Joe Biden’s visit to Saudi Arabia and missile sales to the United Arab Emirates

 

August 2, 2022

OPEC+ sees slightly smaller oil market surplus this year, sources say

OPEC+ sees this year’s oil market as slightly less supplied than previously predicted, a day ahead of a meeting at which the organization is set to decide on its production policy for next month. Data showed that the OPEC+ Joint Technical Committee (JTC), meeting on Tuesday, trimmed its forecast for a surplus in the oil market this year by 200,000 barrels per day (bpd) to 800,000 bpd, three OPEC+ delegates told Reuters.

August 2, 2022

Kuwait nears maximum oil production, with politics, technical challenges stunting growth

Kuwait is close to exhausting its production capacity, capping its ability to bring on more crude oil supplies to meet elevated global demand. This comes as OPEC faces pressure from its key customers for price relief. Due to the bureaucratic challenges, the aging oil fields within Kuwait require foreign consultations which will allow there to be improvements in oil production and decrease technical challenges facing the country which has yet to be achieved.

August 1, 2022

Saudi to push OPEC+ to increase oil production at upcoming meeting

Saudi Arabia will push OPEC+ to increase oil production at an upcoming meeting on Wednesday, a Fox Business news reporter said on Monday. This news comes following the trip of President Joe Biden to the Middle East last month when Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz assured Joe Biden of the OPEC+ production increase within the  meeting. 

August 1, 2022

Kuwait reappoints Mohammed al-Fares as oil minister

Mohammed al-Fares retained his role as Kuwaiti oil minister following the formation of a new government on Aug.1 , amid rising pressure on the country to raise oil supplies as part of its OPEC+ agreement. This  took place following the designation of a new PM Sheikh Ahmad Nawaf AlSabah in which the minister Mohammad AlFares retained his role as Oil minister within the cabinet.

 

July 29, 2022

Moscow says Russia and Saudi Arabia ‘firmly committed’ to OPEC+ goals

Russia and Saudi Arabia remain firmly committed to the goals of the OPEC+ agreement to preserve market stability and balance supply and demand in the global oil markets, the Russian government said in a statement on Friday. Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak met Saudi Arabia’s Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman and they officially discussed cooperation within the OPEC+ agreement that places a quota on oil production in a bid to balance oil prices. 

 

July 28, 2022

Iranian tanker to retrieve oil cargo confiscated by U.S. this week

An Iranian-flagged tanker anchored off the Greek port of Piraeus is expected this week to retrieve part of its cargo of oil confiscated by the United States and sail back to Iran following a Greek court ruling, government sources said on Wednesday. This occurred within Greek territorial waters near the town of Karystos and caused tensions between Tehran and Washington to further escalate. 

July 28, 2022

Oil prices pushed up by low chances of OPEC+ supply boost

Oil prices rose in European trading on Friday as attention turned to next week’s OPEC+ meeting and expectations that it will dash U.S. hopes for a supply boost.Brent crude futures for September settlement, due to expire on Friday, gained $2.89 to trade at $110.03 a barrel. Due to the weakness of the dollar globally, this has caused currencies to purchase oil at a cheaper price. 

July 28, 2022

Once an OPEC quota buster, Iraq struggles to raise oil output due to port limitations

Near-term prospects for increasing loading volumes at its aging Gulf terminal facilities at Basrah are dim, Iraqi officials acknowledge, preventing any meaningful gains in production that would allow the cash-strapped country to benefit from high oil prices. And the degraded pipelines connecting the terminal to loading jetties are a major risk for a catastrophic environmental disaster. The reason for the delay in Oil outputs  is due to the political crisis which have caused instability and financial obstacles for Iraq to handle. 

 

July 28, 2022

OPEC+ to weigh holding oil output steady or small hike, sources say

OPEC and its allies will consider keeping oil output unchanged for September, when they meet next week, despite calls from the United States for more supply.However, a modest output increase is also likely to be discussed, eight sources have said.  The OPEC+ organization, including  Russia this year, will increase their exports exceeding limits which were situated due to the COVID-19 pandemic from 2020.

July 21, 2022

Oil to fuel growth in Gulf economies this year, but will not sustain pace in 2023

 Economies in the six-member Gulf Cooperation Council will grow faster this year than previously thought due to higher oil production, according to a Reuters poll of economists. They predicted growth to slow next year along with global demand. A Reuters poll from July 6-20 predicted exponential growth in the six GCC economies would average 6.2% this year, increasing from 5.9% predicted in an April poll. 

July 21, 2022

Iraq’s southern oil export capacity may rise to 3.35 mil b/d by September: SOMO

Iraq’s southern oil export capacity may go up to 3.35 million b/d by September, from around 3.3 million b/d now, as OPEC’s second biggest producer pumps more crude in line with OPEC+ unwinding output cuts, Deputy Director General of State Oil marketer SOMO said on July 21.

 

July 20, 2022

Russia is China’s top oil supplier for 2nd month, Saudi volumes tumble – data

Russia held its spot as China’s top oil supplier for a second month in June as Chinese buyers cashed in on lower-priced supplies, slashing more costly shipments from Saudi Arabia, data showed on Wednesday. Chinese imports of Russian oil, including supplies pumped from the East Siberia Pacific Ocean pipeline and seaborne shipments from Russia’s European and Far Eastern ports, resulted in 7.29 million tonnes.This was an increase of approximately 10% from 2021, according to data from the Chinese General Administration of Customs.

July 19, 2022

Saudi minister: we see lack of refining capacity in market, not lack of oil |

Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister Faisal bin Farhan Al-Saud said on Tuesday that he saw no shortage of oil in the market, but a lack of oil refining capacity, making it necessary to invest more in capacity to process crude oil into various oil products. As such, the Minister  has stated there needs to be more innovation in the refining  capacity, and not an increase in oil production.

July 18, 2022

Oil gains $5 on weaker dollar, tight supplies

Oil prices rose by  more than $5 on Monday, boosted by dollar weakness and expectations that the U.S. Federal Reserve won’t raise interest rates by a full percentage point at its next meeting to combat inflation.Brent crude exports for September gained $5.11, to settle at $106.27 a barrel, after rising 2.1% on Friday.

July 18, 2022

White House expects OPEC+ oil production hike after Middle East trip

The White House said Monday it anticipates major oil producers in the OPEC+ alliance to increase crude production following President Joe Biden’s trip to the Middle East. Due to the midterm elections taking place on November 8 there is substantial pressure on Joe Biden to lower gas prices as a result of increasing resistance from middle class Americans.

July 17, 2022

Saudis say crude output hikes are within OPEC+ as Biden leaves region without oil deal

Saudi officials said on July 16 that the country’s oil production policies are implemented within the OPEC+ group, as US President Joe Biden ended his four-day trip to the Middle East without a pledge for higher crude supply to further temper oil prices. The Saudis have stated that they believe the demands of Joe Biden are “unrealistic” and globally will not fix the oil prices dilemma within the country.

July 15, 2022

U.S. not expecting Saudi Arabia to immediately boost oil production

The United States does not expect Saudi Arabia to immediately boost oil output and awaits the outcome of an OPEC+ meeting on Aug. 3, the U.S. national security adviser said on Friday. This lowers expectations as the U.S. President Joe Biden visits the kingdom. Notably, Saudi Arabia and the UAE are the world’s largest oil producers in the OPEC+ organization, alongside Russia.

July 15, 2022

EXCLUSIVE Saudi Arabia doubles Q2 Russian fuel oil imports for power generation

Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest oil exporter, more than doubled the amount of Russian fuel oil it imported in the second quarter to feed power stations. This was done to meet summer cooling demand and free up the kingdom’s own crude for export, according to data and traders’ claims. Due to the invasion of Ukraine, Russia has resorted to selling their fuel at discounted prices which Saudi has increasingly imported into the country.

July 13, 2022

Iraq plan to boost oil export capacity suffers setback, source says

Iraq’s bid to boost oil export capacity at its Gulf ports has suffered a setback due to delays in pumping station upgrades, an Iraqi oil source said.Iraq is OPEC’s second highest oil  producer which aims to raise operational export capacity in Basra to 3.45 million barrels per day (bpd) from 3.3 million bpd.

July 12, 2022

Asian refiners to receive full Saudi crude allocation in August

Saudi Aramco has notified at least three North Asian buyers that it will supply full contractual volumes of crude oil in August, sources with knowledge of the matter said on Tuesday. Saudi Arabia and other OPEC+ states agreed this month to increase production to commemorate Russian output losses by 648,000 barrels per day (bpd) in July- and a similar amount in August. This comes against the initial plan to add 432,000 bpd a month over three months until September.

July 12, 2022

OPEC sees slower 2023 oil demand growth, no big shale gain

OPEC expects global oil demand to rise in 2023, albeit at a slower pace than 2022, the producer group said in its first forecast for next year, citing signs of robust economic growth and progress in containing COVID-19 in China. 

One of the main reasons for slow oil demand growth is tight supply and logistical problems which have affected the process of oil demand growth.

July 11, 2022

Oil slides on strong dollar and weaker demand outlook

Oil prices fell sharply on Tuesday on a strong dollar.Demand has sapped due to COVID-19 curbs in top crude importer China, and fears of a global economic slowdown. Due to the petro-dollar, this has caused the product to be more expensive for other global currencies to purchase the product, despite the lower price. Thus, this has resulted in a lower demand globally.

July 8, 2022

OPEC+ boosts June crude output by 390,000 b/d, but wide quota gap persists: Platts survey | S&P Global Commodity Insights

OPEC and its Russia-led allies hiked crude oil production by 390,000 b/d in June, according to the latest Platts survey by S&P Global Commodity Insights, though almost all members continued to struggle to hit their output targets. The supply chain disruptions caused globally by the pandemic, coupled with geopolitical tensions and technical issues which resulted in a quota gap.

July 5, 2022

Saudi Arabia sets August crude prices to Asia at near-record high

 Saudi Arabia, the world’s top oil exporter, raised August’s crude oil prices for Asian buyers to near record levels amid tight supply and robust demand. OPEC+ has decided to stick to their projected market output despite demands from the United States and the United Kingdom to increase their oil output, in order to lower global oil prices.

July 5, 2022

Shell Invests in Qatar’s $29 Billion Liquefied Gas Project

SHELL PLC became the latest international energy company to invest in Qatar’s $29 billion liquefied natural gas project, clinching a 6.25% stake as Europe races to secure new supplies of the fuel. This will cause the Gas output for Qatar to increase by 40% to 110 Million tons per year, in addition to cooperation from the gas firms of Total Energies SE and Exxon Mobil Corp.

July 5, 2022

Oil falls as recession fears boost demand concerns

Oil plummeted by about $10 a barrel on Tuesday as concerns of a global recession curtailing demand overshadowed a strike by Norwegian oil and gas workers that could cut exports and exacerbate supply shortages. The demand for crude oil has sank, and fears of a recession have increased globally as central banks take aggressive measures against inflation.

July 4, 2022

Oil prices reverse losses, gain on tight supply concerns

Oil prices reversed losses and edged up on Monday as concerns of tight supply amid lower OPEC output, unrest in Libya and sanctions on Russia outweighed fears of a global recession. This is due to Output decreasing in 10 countries by 100,000 BPD to 28.52 million BPD which is different from their projected increase of 275,000 BPD.

June 30, 2022

Oil dips as supply concerns linger and OPEC+ sticks to policy

Oil prices sank around 3% on Thursday as OPEC+ confirmed it would only increase output in August by as  much as previously announced despite tight global supplies, but left the market wondering about future output. This comes as a result of the OPEC+ meetings which included Russia and discussed strategic cooperation. 

June 30, 2022

OPEC+ reaffirms August oil production hike, leaves future output policy undecided

 An increasingly stretched OPEC and its allies on June 30 reaffirmed plans for a nominal 648,000 b/d production rise in August, as questions continued to swirl about how much crude oil the group will be able and willing to pump in the months ahead.The OPEC+  and Russia, have been slowly raising their quotas each month, aiming to restore production to pre-pandemic levels by August, but many countries have not been able to keep up, due to slow infrastructure,  lack of funds or political issues.

June 29, 2022

Oil prices rise for fourth day on supply worries

 Oil prices slid about 2% on Wednesday as a rise in U.S. gasoline and distillate inventories coupled with worries about slower economic growth around the world offset ongoing concerns about tight crude supplies. One of the reasons for the rise in oil prices is the stronger dollar which makes oil more expensive and slow economic growth globally.

June 27, 2022

Oil prices edge higher ahead of G7 talks on new Russian sanctions |

Oil rose $2 a barrel on Monday as the prospect of even tighter supplies loomed over the market as the Group of Seven nations promised to tighten the squeeze on Russian President Vladimir Putin’s war chest, while actually lowering energy prices. Also, G7 should consider negotiations with the oil exporting nations of Iran and Venezuela due to the fact they both have been facing sanctions which affected their oil exportation techniques.

June 24, 2022

OPEC and allies set to hold two meetings next week, OPEC website

OPEC is set to hold an ordinary meeting on June 29 followed by a meeting of OPEC and non-OPEC members on June 30, the producer group’s website showed.

June 23, 2022

OPEC+ to stick to oil supply rise plan as Biden heads to Saudi – sources

OPEC and allied producing countries, including Russia, will likely stick to a plan for accelerated oil output increases in August, sources said, hoping to ease surging oil prices and inflation pressure as U.S. President Joe Biden plans to visit Saudi Arabia and the Middle East. This occurred after Biden’s administration pleaded for increased supply from the OPEC+ members as the world struggles to tackle the energy crisis.

June 21, 2022

Kuwait has the capacity to reach its OPEC quota and any future increases -KPC CEO

Kuwait Petroleum Corporation chief said on Tuesday the Gulf oil producer had the capacity to reach its OPEC quota and any future increases. According to the KPC CEO Sheikh Nawaf Saud AlSabah the state-owned oil company is planning on investing in pipelines and the monetization of them as was the case by Aramco and ADNOC.

June 20, 2022

Oil swings higher as tight supplies overshadow demand destruction

Oil prices swung higher in volatile trading on Monday, as traders focused on tight supplies over slowing global economic growth. The main factors that have affected the Oil demand increase are economic sanctions on Russia and the high prices decreasing demand internationally.Analysts believe that a global recession is imminent due to the increased inflation within the United States.

June 18, 2022

OPEC’s Barkindo says common objective with non-OPEC partners is market stability

 The common objective of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its non-OPEC partners has always been to maintain oil market stability, not to raise prices or bring them down, OPEC Secretary General Mohammad Barkindo said on Saturday. Moreover, the secretary general stated that the stability of oil prices globally is the responsibility of all oil producing nations in accordance with the market, and the laws of supply and demand.

June 18, 2022

Oil slumps 6% to four-week low on recession worries, strong dollar

Oil prices tumbled about 6% to a four-week low on Friday due to the worries that interest rate hikes by major central banks could slow the global economy and cut demand for energy. Many central banks have globally tightened interest rates to fight inflation, however a global recession is imminent and can not be avoided.

June 17, 2022

Exclusive: China firms in advanced talks with Qatar for gas field stakes, LNG offtake

China’s national oil majors are in advanced talks with Qatar to invest in the North Field East expansion of the world’s largest liquefied natural gas (LNG) project and buy the fuel under long-term contracts, three analysts have said.This deal will allow China to diversify their imports and also increase the exports of Qatar to China, as was the case when Qatar was China’s largest LNG supplier.

June 17, 2022

UAE licenses third unit of Barakah nuclear power plant

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has licensed the third unit of its Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant, the UAE’s permanent representative to the International Atomic Energy Agency, Hamad Al Kaabi, told reporters on Friday. This is significant because this is the Gulf region’s first fully operational nuclear powered plant Once completed, the plant will supply the UAE with 25% of national energy supply. 

June 15, 2022

Iraq to begin setting up electricity links with S.Arabia -state news agency

Iraq’s electricity ministry has begun establishing interconnection stations with Saudi Arabia and determining transmission paths, state news agency INA said on Wednesday. Due to a sudden electricity shortage during the summer months, Iraq has chosen to ask for assistance from Saudi Arabia which will join the list of other gulf states which assist Iraq’s energy supply.

June 13, 2022

Exclusive: OPEC sees global oil demand growth slowing in 2023, sources say

World oil demand growth will slow in 2023, OPEC delegates and industry sources said, as surging crude and fuel prices help drive up inflation and act as a drag on the global economy. Although there has been a decline in oil growth in 2020 due to the pandemic, higher prices have become more realistic within this year. Moreover, the fuel price has rebounded this year because demand has soared after a decrease was witnessed in 2020.

June 12, 2022

QatarEnergy signs deal with TotalEnergies for North Field East project

 QatarEnergy signed a partnership deal with TotalEnergies on Sunday for the North Field East expansion of the world’s largest liquefied natural gas (LNG) project.  The state owned company’s Chief Executive said more partners would be announced in the coming days.The rich Gulf state is relying on foreign consultants to develop the $30 billion expansion of the North Field project. The state of Qatar’s minister of energy stated that all foreign companies have been chosen and an official announcement will be made soon.

June 10, 2022

Oil dives as U.S. inflation data surges; China imposes lockdowns

 Oil prices sank on Friday, after U.S. consumer prices rose more than expected, and China imposed new Covid-19 lockdown measures .Many factors have contributed to the Oil dives such as the Iranian state removing nuclear monitoring,  and Brent crude fell by $1.19 to $121.88 a barrel.

June 8, 2022

Eni to join Exxon, Total, Shell, Conoco in Qatar’s mega-LNG expansion

Italian producer Eni (ENI.MI) has been picked, along with another four oil majors, by Qatar as partners in the near $30 billion expansion of the world’s largest liquefied natural gas (LNG) project,analysts said on Wednesday. The State sponsored company of Qatar Energy will hold a news conference and announce that the North Field Expansion project will expand from 77 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) to 126 mtpa by 2027.

June 8, 2022

OPEC+ efforts to boost oil output ‘not encouraging’, UAE minister says

 Efforts by OPEC+ oil producers to boost output are “not encouraging”, UAE energy minister Suhail al-Mazrouei said on Wednesday, noting the group was currently 2.6 million barrels per day short of its target.The minister Suhail Mohamed Al Mazrouei stated that the economic necessities of China will boost oil output since recent lockdown measures have decreased.

June 6, 2022

Saudi Arabia hikes July crude prices surprisingly high for Asia buyers

Saudi Arabia, the world’s top oil exporter, raised July crude oil prices for Asian buyers to higher-than-expected levels amid concerns about tight supply, coupled with expectations of strong demand in the summer. The increase that was noted was approximately $6.5 a barrel, which is a substantial increase compared to the $2 a barrel previously expected by analysts.

June 3, 2022

South Korean companies to build $1 billion green hydrogen plant in UAE

Three South Korean companies have signed an agreement to build a $1 billion green hydrogen and ammonia production plant in the United Arab Emirates, their UAE partner said on Friday. The attractiveness of green hydrogen has increased recently due to the fact it passes water through an engine to produce renewable energy and decrease greenhouse gas emissions. The plant is expected to be built near Abu Dhabi and is in accordance with UAE’s initiative to reduce reliance on oil and gas sectors.

June 2, 2022

Iran’s energy export revenue up 60 pct in March-May vs year ago: Oil ministry media

Iran’s energy export revenue is 60 percent higher in the first two months of the Iranian year (March 21 to May 21) compared to the same period a year ago, an official from the Iranian oil ministry told SHANA news agency on Sunday. Although Iran has been hit with heavy sanctions by the US, the withdrawal of Trump from Iranian sanctions in 2018 has allowed the country’s oil exports to increase.

June 2, 2022

OPEC+ raises output faster than expected as Russia’s war roils global energy markets

 OPEC and its oil-producing allies agreed to hike output in July and August by a larger-than-expected amount, as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine wreaks havoc on global energy markets. This decision came as a result of Biden’s administration urging Oil companies to increase output in order to stabilize oil prices globally. 

May 29, 2022

Chairman of the Board of Directors of ACWA Power Saudi Arabia to CNBC Arabia: We signed an agreement for the Oman hydrogen project to produce green ammonia in cooperation with Omani OQ and Air products

Saudi Arabia’s ACWA and Oman’s OQ signed a deal to produce green ammonia energy. The project should support the regional effort to push renewable energy projects and part of the MOU signed between Oman and Saudi Arabia in December.

May 25, 2022

Kuwait to start building world’s largest petroleum research center – oil ministry | Reuters

Kuwait plans to start building the world’s largest petroleum research center by the end of the year, the oil ministry said on Twitter on Wednesday. According to the ministry, the project will cost an estimated 120 Million Dollars and has been stalled due to logistical obstacles. The center will be created South of Kuwait City in Ahmadi and focus mainly on perfecting petroleum engineering techniques and innovative crude oil extraction which is essential to the field.

May 24, 2022

Saudi Arabia says it’s done all it can for the global oil market, Energy & Commodities – THE BUSINESS TIMES

Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister said there’s nothing more the kingdom can do to tame oil markets, implying that the world’s biggest crude exporter has no plan to accelerate its gradual production increases.

May 20, 2022

Qatar and Germany sign an energy partnership agreement

On May 20th, Germany and Qatar signed an agreement to develop their partnership in the energy field during the Emir of Qatar, Sheik Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, visit to Germany. The war in Ukraine caused disruption of gas supplies from Russia to many European countries, and Europe is trying to reduce its reliance on Russian energy by the end of the year.

May 16, 2022

Saudi Arabia set for oil output capacity above 13 million barrels per day by 2027, minister says | Reuters

Saudi Energy Minister Abdulaziz bin Salman said that his country is on track to lift oil production capacity by more than 1 million barrels per day to over 13 million bpd by the end of 2026 or the start of 2027.

May 16, 2022

Bahrain still evaluating giant shale oil discovery despite high oil prices: minister | S&P Global Commodity Insights

Bahrain’s oil minister told reporters on May 16 that his country has yet to take a decision on its 80-billion-barrel offshore shale oil discovery in spite of higher oil prices. Due to the requirement of foreign consultations for this project, this has caused the process of development to be delayed. The oil ministry planned to develop the refineries within a period of five years with the support of international oil companies, but progress has been limited.

May 13, 2022

Saudi Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman: Record Fuel Costs Driven by Refining Crunch – Bloomberg

The Energy Minister of Saudi Arabia Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman blamed the rise in gas prices on the closure of refineries in the US and Europe, not any shortage in oil supply.

May 10, 2022

Saudi, UAE energy ministers say NOPEC bill risks destabilizing the oil market | S&P Global Commodity Insights

Targeted by so-called NOPEC legislation in the US that would allow antitrust lawsuits against the producer alliance, top OPEC officials said on May 10 that the bill would worsen market volatility by driving away investment in the oil industry. Due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, global oil prices have substantially increased throughout the world. 

May 5, 2022

OPEC+ agrees to another modest production increase after EU outlines Russian oil ban

Oil producer group OPEC+ agreed on Thursday to raise production targets by 432,000 barrels per day for June, sticking to an existing strategy of gradually unwinding record supply cuts.

May 3, 2022

Saudi Arabia lowers Arab Light oil price to Asia, Europe in June | Reuters

Saudi Arabia lowered the price of its Arab Light crude grade to Asia and Europe for the month of June, according to a pricing document released by oil producer Saudi Aramco on Sunday.

April 20, 2022

China grows reliance on Middle Eastern crudes in Q1 as Russian inflows drop 11% | S&P Global Commodity Insights

China’s reliance on Middle Eastern crude oil grew sharply in the first quarter of 2022, as the country reduced inflows from Russia, Brazil and the US, data from the General Administration of Customs showed. Middle Eastern oil exports are  5.35 Million barrels per day accounting for 47.5% of market share within China. Specifically, Oman, Iraq, UAE, and Kuwait all increased their exports to China in the three-month period during 2022’s Q1 from 4.7% to 30.1%. 

 

April 20, 2022

Saudi says it and Kuwait have right to exploit gas-rich offshore zone -state news agency | Reuters

The Saudi cabinet reaffirmed the right of the kingdom and its neighbor Kuwait to exploit natural resources at a joint, energy-rich, offshore area. Iran has called for negotiations with Saudi and Kuwait to discuss their joint projects within the Durra gas field. This gas field is situated in the Gulf which is a contested water source by Iran, Saudi, and Kuwait.

April 20, 2022

Japan refiner Eneos to buy alternative to Russian crude from Middle East

 Japan’s biggest oil refiner Eneos Holdings Inc has no plans to buy Russian crude until all problems related to the Ukraine crisis are over and will purchase alternative supplies from the Middle East, its chairman said on Wednesday. As such, Eneos has stated that due to the “Special operation” occurring in Ukraine Eneos will not import any more oil from Russia.

April 20, 2022

Iraq Aims to Close Qatar Gas Import Deal to Add Supply

 Iraq plans to sign a deal next month to import liquefied natural gas from Qatar in an effort to secure enough of the fuel used for power generation and to diversify its sources of supply. Iran had a problem supplying Iraq with its LNG needs due to increased domestic demands inside Iran.

April 19, 2022

Iran needs $80 bil gas investment to avoid becoming an importer: Owji | S&P Global Commodity Insights

Iranian oil minister Javad Owji said April 19 that his country needs to invest $80 billion in its gas industry to achieve its 1.4 Bcm/d production target. The flow of foreign investment into the US-sanctioned country has thinned since the US withdrew from a nuclear deal in 2018.

April 17, 2022

Saudi Arabia’s MBS and Russia’s Putin back OPEC+ efforts to balance oil markets | S&P Global Commodity Insights

Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Russian President Vladimir Putin discussed the role their countries play in ensuring oil market stability in a phone call on April 16, the Kremlin said in a statement. Russia, which is a Non-Opec oil exporting leader, was hit by western sanctions targeting its financial sector after it invaded Ukraine, which saw its crude production fall to 10.04 million b/d. Consequently, European economies have halted their oil trade with Russia due to the invasion of Ukraine.

April 17, 2022

Qatar Energy Minister meets Korean counterpart

The energy minister of Qatar met with the Korean Energy minister within Doha on April 17, 2022 to discuss bilateral cooperation in the energy sectors in both countries.

April 15, 2022

Iran Guards say they have seized two ships with smuggled fuel in Gulf

 Iran’s Revolutionary Guards said on Friday they had seized two vessels along the country’s coast on the Gulf and the nearby Gulf of Oman for allegedly smuggling fuel. Due to subsidies and currency devaluation, Iran has some of the world’s cheapest fuel prices and has been fighting rampant fuel smuggling to neighboring states.

April 15, 2022

Iraq maintaining its position in Indian market despite rise in Russian oil imports – SOMO head

Although India has increased its importation of Russian oil, Iraqi oil still remains a majority of Indian imported oil into the country. The reasoning behind the Russian alternative is that Indians and other consumer countries noticed that Russian oil is sold at a discounted price per barrel. As such, demand for Russian oil rapidly increased internationally. However, Iraq has been able to continue their competitive oil exports to India because of their government strategic agreements which bind the two countries. Moreover, Iraq has agreements with private companies within India.

April 13, 2022

Kuwait, Saudi Arabia invite Iran to hold talks on gas-rich offshore zone -SPA

Saudi Arabia and Kuwait invited Iran to negotiate the eastern limit of a joint, energy-rich, offshore area, including the Durra natural gas field. Both states have claimed it is their right to develop in this area, with the Kuwaiti government stating that Durra is “entirely a Kuwaiti and Saudi field.” Iran has claimed that it has a stake in the field and the Saudi-Kuwaiti agreement to develop it is “illegal.” 

April 12, 2022

OPEC cuts 2022 world oil demand forecast due to Ukraine war

In a monthly report, OPEC said world demand would rise by 3.67 million barrels per day (bpd) in 2022, down 480,000 bpd from its previous forecast. According to the report, “the strong rise in commodity prices in combination with ongoing supply-chain bottlenecks and COVID-19-related logistical logjams in China and elsewhere are all fuelling global inflation.” OPEC said inflation was the major factor impacting the world economy and lowered this year’s economic growth forecast to 3.9% from 4.2% and said there was a chance of a further cut.

April 12, 2022

Saudi Arabia leads OPEC decision to drop IEA data as US ties fray

OPEC has chosen to stop using oil data from the IEA, which is considered the West’s energy watchdog. This has raised concerns about the strained relationship between Saudi Arabia and Washington and how it may be impacting reactions to the Ukraine-Russia crisis. U.S. President Biden is facing pressure to lower gasoline prices and address inflation ahead of mid-term elections in November, however the lack of relations with Saudi Arabia has proven to make the situation even more delicate. Saudi Arabia and its allies are likely unwilling to assist the United States due to the lack of American addressal of Gulf concerns about Iran at nuclear talks in Vienna, the lack of support for offensive operations by the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen, and imposed conditions on U.S. weapons sales to Gulf states. OPEC’s dropping of the IEA data reflects this frustration of bias from the IEA towards the United States, and other factors straining U.S.-Gulf relations. 

April 11, 2022

OPEC tells EU not possible to replace potential Russian oil supply loss

OPEC Secretary General Mohammad Barkindo told the European Union on Monday that current and future sanctions on Russia could create one of the worst ever oil supply shocks and it would be impossible to replace those volumes.

April 10, 2022

Kuwait raises May crude prices to Asia to record levels

Kuwait has raised the official selling prices (OSPs) for two crude grades it sells to Asia in May to record levels. The producer has set May Kuwait Export Crude (KEC) price at $9.30 a barrel above the average of Oman/Dubai quotes, up $4.50 from the previous month. It also raised the May Kuwait Super Light Crude (KSLC) OSP to $9.65 a barrel above Oman/Dubai quotes, up $3.70.

April 8, 2022

Iraq can export more than 3.3 mln bpd from its southern ports, oil minister says

Iraqi oil minister Ihsan Abdul-Jabbar said Iraq can secure exports of more than 3.3 million barrels per day (bpd) from its southern ports, state news agency INA reported. The minister expressed his optimism that oil prices would continue to rise throughout 2022. 

April 6, 2022

Some Indian refiners set up to cut May Saudi oil, snap up Russian barrels

To mitigate the rising cost of oil imports, India has turned to Russian barrels that are available at a deep discount to the dated Brent benchmark, citing “national interests”. The Middle East accounts for the bulk of India’s oil imports, but at least two Indian refiners are planning on buying less Saudi oil as crude oil prices reach record highs. 

April 5, 2022

Iraq’s March oil output falls as gap with its OPEC+ quota widens

Iraq pumped 4.15 million barrels per day (bpd) of oil in March, 222,000 bpd short of its production quota under an agreement with other OPEC+ producers. Iraq’s March output fell by 112,000 bpd from February, largely due to field outages in the south, data from SOMO showed. Upgrade work on Iraq’s Gulf ports, which lasted for most of 2021 and is scheduled to be finished in the current quarter, has also prevented Iraq from pumping larger volumes. 

April 3, 2022

Oil prices fall after truce in Middle East conflict, petroleum reserve news

Oil prices fell as the United Arab Emirates and the Houthis welcomed a truce that would halt military operations on the Saudi-Yemeni border, alleviating concerns about potential supply issues. Early losses this week also come after oil prices settled 13% down last week due to President Biden’s U.S. oil reserves release. 

April 1, 2022

OPEC output rise in March falls short of pledged increase – survey

OPEC pumped 28.54 million barrels per day (bpd) in March, a Reuters survey found, up 90,000 bpd from February but short of the 253,000 bpd increase called for under its deal with allies including Russia. OPEC+ met on March 31 and confirmed previously agreed plans of a 400,000 bpd increase in March from all OPEC+ members, of which about 253,000 bpd is shared by the 10 OPEC producers the agreement covers. Outages in Libya and Nigeria also limited the increase in OPEC’s output. 

March 31, 2022

EU regulators close antitrust investigation into Qatar Energy

EU antitrust regulators closed their investigation into Qatar Energy after evidence they collected did not confirm their initial concerns with  Qatar Energy’s supply agreements with European gas importers and their ability to sell liquefied natural gas in alternative destinations within Europe.

March 31, 2022

OPEC holds special meeting to ditch IEA data – source

OPEC held an unusually brief meeting to ditch the International Energy Agency (IEA) from its list of trusted data contributors. Earlier this week, OPEC experts recommended ditching the IEA and choosing consultancies Rystad and Wood Mackenzie instead, in yet another sign of a hardening standoff with the West.

March 30, 2022

Saudi Arabia may raise May crude prices to Asia to new record levels

Saudi Arabia is expected to raise crude prices to Asia in May, with the official selling price (OSP) for flagship Arab Light crude rising by $5 a barrel on average to reach nearly $10 a barrel above Oman/Dubai quotes, the grade’s highest premium ever. However, spot premiums have halved from peaks over the last week in muted trade, prompting some buyers to call for smaller hikes in Saudi oil prices. Saudi Aramco may also reduce price hikes for Saudi medium and heavy grades as Russian Urals crude is still heading into India, one respondent said. State oil giant Saudi Aramco sets its crude prices based on recommendations from customers and after calculating the change in the value of its oil over the past month, based on yields and product prices.

March 29, 2022

Saudi energy minister says oil alliance OPEC+ will leave politics out of output decisions

Saudi Arabia’s energy minister, Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, declared that OPEC+ would keep politics out of decision-making in favor of the “common good” of stabilizing energy prices. The minister said the organization’s very existence is dependent on separating its mission to stabilize oil prices from other geopolitical factors. UAE Energy Minister Suhail Al Mazrouei added that the organization had continued to operate while constituent members were at war, without taking a side. “Our aim is to calm the market, trying to come up with volumes as much as possible, and if we are asking anyone to leave, then we are raising the prices,” he said.

March 27, 2022

France, Saudi, UAE talk about diversifying Europe energy supplies

Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian in a phone call with his Saudi and UAE counterparts Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud and Abdullah bin Zayed al-Nahyan underscored the importance of coordination with the two Gulf states with a view to diversifying the oil and gas supplies of European states, according to a statement from the Foreign Ministry. Le Drian is also scheduled to visit Qatar next week, during which the topic of energy diversification will be discussed, BFMTV news reported. 

March 26, 2022

Qatar to produce 800MW of solar power this year

Qatar’s Minister of Environment and Climate Change, HE Sheikh Faleh bin Nasser bin Ahmed bin Ali al-Thani, announced that Qatar would start producing solar power this year, in an effort to reduce gas emissions and increase the use of renewable energy. The minister declared Qatar would produce 800 megawatts of solar power this year, and the country’s goal of producing 1.6 gigawatts of solar power by 2030. Sheikh Faleh also noted that Qatar has managed to reduce 80% of gas emission in the Al Shaheen Gas field, one of the largest gas fields in the world. 

March 25, 2022

Oil rises to over $120/bbl after attack on Saudi facilities

Crude prices rose more than 1 percent, bringing the price to $120 a barrel, as traders dealt with the impact of a missile attack on an oil distribution facility in Saudi Arabia. Yemen’s Houthis said they launched attacks on Saudi energy facilities on Friday and the Saudi-led coalition said Aramco’s fuel distribution station in Jeddah had been targeted by an attack, but that a fire in two tanks at the facility had been brought under control.

March 24, 2022

UAE expands nuclear power plant, doubles electricity production

The United Arab Emirates announced that it expanded its nuclear power plant, which was the first to be established in the Arab world. The Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant now produces a total 2,800 megawatts of total electricity, doubling the previous output. While oil and gas still dominate the energy production of the UAE, the country is looking to expand its renewable energy alternatives, even positing a target of the Barakah plant producing 85% of the state’s clean energy by 2025. 

March 24, 2022

U.S. refiners turn to Middle East for fuel oil after Russia import ban

After President Biden banned Russian oil imports over the invasion of Ukraine, U.S. refiners have turned to Middle Eastern producers for fuel oil cargoes. Last year, Russia accounted for just under half of the U.S. fuel oil imports, while the Middle East only provided about 5%. Middle East supplies are set to make up at least 17% of April U.S. fuel oil purchases, according to preliminary Refinitiv Eikon tanker tracking data. Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Iraq and the United Arab Emirates make up roughly half of all fuel oil cargoes under contract and are expected to head to the United States in April. Iraqi fuel oil arrived in the U.S. this March, for the first time since mid-2021. 

March 22, 2022

Egypt, UAE, Israel discuss energy market stability

Egypt, UAE, and Israel have faced heavy pressure from Washington to shun Russia and, in the Emirates’ case, also to supply more oil to a world trying to wean itself from Russian energy. That arm-twisting has come as the United States pursues a renewed nuclear deal with Iran, a rival of Israel and the UAE, that would lift international sanctions on Tehran in exchange for limits on its nuclear program. The Emirates and Saudi Arabia, another important American ally in the region, have complained about what they see as a lack of American support after attacks that were linked to Iran.

March 21, 2022

UAE, Netherlands forge partnership to boost clean hydrogen usage

As part of the Joint Economic Committee, the UAE and the Netherlands have been in discussion to identify common interests and create a partnership for decarbonization of the energy sector and increasing the use of clean hydrogen. Suhail Mohammed Al Mazrouei, UAE Minister for Energy and Infrastructure, and the Dutch Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation, Liesje Schreinemacher, signed the MoU at the Dutch Pavilion at Expo Dubai on Tuesday.

March 21, 2022

Saudi Arabia, Kuwait agree on developing Durra gas field in the Gulf

Saudi Arabia’s energy minister has signed a document with his Kuwaiti counterpart to develop the Durra gas field, Kuwait Petroleum Corporation said in a statement on Monday. The Durra field, which is shared between the two Gulf states, is expected to produce one billion standard cubic feet per day of gas and 84,000 barrels per day of condensates according to the statement.

March 20, 2022

Saudi oil refinery output drops following Houthi attack: State media

Production at Saudi Arabia’s oil refinery in Yanbu has dropped temporarily following a drone attack overnight claimed by the Houthi group in Yemen, the Saudi state news agency, SPA, reported on Sunday. The refinery, known as Yasref, on the Red Sea, will compensate for the shortfall from its stockpiles, the news agency said, citing a source at the Saudi energy ministry.

March 19, 2022

Yemen Houthis attack Saudi energy facilities, refinery output hit

Yemen’s Iran-aligned Houthi group fired missiles and drones at Saudi energy and water desalination facilities, causing a temporary drop in output at a refinery but no casualties, the Saudi energy ministry and state media said on Sunday. “The assault on Yasref facilities has led to a temporary reduction in the refinery’s production, which will be compensated for from the inventory,” a statement said, referring to Yanbu Aramco Sinopec Refining Company, a joint venture between Saudi Aramco and China Petrochemical Corporation. Later in the morning, a water desalination plant in Al-Shaqeeq, a power station in Dhahran al Janub, and a gas facility in Khamis Mushait, were targeted as well.

March 19, 2022

Iran oil minister says aiming for 1.4 million bpd crude exports

“In parliament, lawmakers decided to raise the ceiling of exports of oil and condensates from 1.2 million barrels (per day) to 1.4 million barrels. The Oil Ministry will do everything in its power to realize the level set in the budget,” Iranian Oil Minister Javad Owji said. Iran, facing U.S. sanctions on its crude oil exports, does not divulge exact figures on its oil sales. Owji said his ministry planned to raise production capacity of crude and condensates to 5.7 million bpd from about 3.7-4 million bpd, without giving a timeframe. In late 2020, Iran unveiled an ambitious plan to increase production capacity to more than 6.5 million bpd by 2040, a statement that is said to be unrealistic for experts. 

March 18, 2022

IEA urges reduced transport to cut oil use amid supply crunch

The plan by the Paris-based grouping of 31 industrialized countries – which does not include Russia – underlines the urgency of a supply crunch brought on by sanctions and buyer aversion to Russian oil, which has raised fuel prices. The recommendations – which include lower speed limits, working from home, car-free days in cities, cheaper public transport and more carpooling – could cut oil demand by 2.7 million barrels a day within four months, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said. The IEA urged governments to make the changes permanent, not just for economic reasons but in order to combat climate change.

March 18, 2022

OPEC+ supply gap widens further as February compliance jumps

OPEC+ compliance with oil production cuts rose to 136% in February from 129% in January, two sources said, missing its target by over 1 million barrels per day (bpd), as an already tight oil market braces for major Russian disruption. The International Energy Agency said this week the oil market was set for a 700,000 bpd supply deficit in the second quarter as Western sanctions on Moscow and buyer reluctance could lead Russian oil supplies to drop by 3 million bpd in April.

March 17, 2022

Most Gulf bourses rise tracking oil prices; financials boost Saudi

Most stock markets in the Gulf ended higher on Wednesday, as oil prices jumped after the International Energy Agency said three million barrels a day of Russian oil and products could be shut in from next month. “Gulf Cooperation Council stock markets were mostly performing positively today while investors return to the market to buy the dip after a week of price corrections,” wrote Miguel Rodriguez, chief market analyst at CAPEX.com, adding uncertainties on the supply availability of oil amid rising COVID-19 cases in China are still weighing on sentiment.

March 16, 2022

UAE’s energy company ADNOC awards Dh2.4b in cementing services contracts

The UAE energy major ADNOC has signed ‘framework agreements’ valued at Dh2.4 billion for cementing services to five companies, including Halliburton Worldwide Ltd. Abu Dhabi and Baker Middle East. The other three are Emirates Western Oil Well Drilling & Maintenance Co., NESR Energy Services and Emjel Oil Field Services. These cover ADNOC’s onshore and offshore fields and will run for five years with an option for a further two years. Yaser Saeed Almazrouei, ADNOC Upstream’s Executive Director, said, “The awards for cementing services will support the ongoing expansion of ADNOC’s drilling activities as we grow our production capacity, strengthening our position as a reliable global supplier of some of the world’s most carbon efficient barrels.” Cementing represents a major process in the drilling and completion of oil and gas wells.

March 16, 2022

UAE’s Masdar announces start of construction for solar PV plant in Azerbaijan

UAE-based renewable energy company Masdar has announced the formal start of construction for its 230-megawatt (MW) Garadagh solar PV plant in Azerbaijan. Masdar had signed agreements to develop the Garadagh project, situated nine kilometers northwest of the Alat settlement, in April of last year, with the plant expected to start commercial operation in 2023. The project will help to generate half a billion kilowatt-hours of electricity annually, adequate to meet the needs of over 110,000 houses, and will reduce emissions by more than 200,000 tons a year, a statement said. The Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD) is a finance partner for the project. The plant is the country’s first foreign investment-based independent solar power project. 

March 15, 2022

Oil price plunges on easing supply concerns, China COVID-19 cases

Oil prices tumbled to their lowest in almost three weeks on Tuesday as supply disruption fears eased and surging COVID-19 cases in China spurred demand concerns. The steep decline followed a statement from Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov, saying that Moscow is in favor of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal resuming as soon as possible. The talks to revive the nuclear accord, which would lead to sanctions on Iran’s oil sector being lifted and allow Tehran to resume crude exports, had recently been stalled because of Russian demands.

March 14, 2022

Saudi cooperation with China continues with finalization of long-planned refinery deal

Saudi Aramco made the “final investment decision” to develop a refinery and petrochemical complex in northeast China with the North Huajin Chemical Industries Group Corporation and Panjin Xincheng Industrial Group companies, the official Saudi Press Agency reported. One Aramco executive said that China is key to their plans to expand in Asia. “China is a cornerstone of our downstream expansion strategy in Asia and an increasingly significant driver of global chemical demand,” said Mohammed al-Qahtani, per the agency. China has become Saudi Arabia’s top trading partner. The deal is the latest example of their extended cooperation, touching on multiple sectors as well. 

March 12, 2022

Germany discussed energy cooperation with Qatar

Germany is to close its last nuclear power plants this year and plans to build its first liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal within two years. “We discussed bilateral cooperation particularly in energy and corporate investments,” Joerg Kukies, the German chancellery’s state secretary, stated, adding he talked to Deputy Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani, who also heads the Qatar Investment Authority sovereign wealth fund. Qatar has said it could divert probably 10-15% of its LNG shipping volumes, as the core energy producer to counter dependence on Russia. It plans to raise LNG production capacity to 126 million tonnes a year by 2027 from 77 million tonnes at present.

March 11, 2022

Yemen’s Houthis claim drone attack on refinery in Saudi capital

The Iran-aligned Houthi movement targeted a Saudi Aramco refinery in Riyadh using three Samad-3 drones, its military spokesman Yahya Sarea said on Friday. Six Samad-1 drones were also fired at Aramco facilities in the Saudi cities of Jizan and Abha. According to the energy ministry of the Kingdom, “these repeated acts of sabotage and terrorism on vital installations and civilian structures do not just target the Kingdom, but aim to undermine the security and stability of global energy supplies.”

March 10, 2022

Aramco says China joint venture to develop refinery and petrochemical complex

The Saudi Aramco joint venture in China, expected to be operational in 2024, combines a 300,000 barrel-per-day capacity refinery and ethylene-based steam cracker, with Aramco set to supply up to 210,000 barrels a day of crude oil feedstock. Huajin Aramco Petrochemical Company is a joint venture between Saudi oil giant Aramco and North Huajin Chemical Industries Group Corporation and Panjin Xincheng Industrial Group.

March 10, 2022

UAE committed to OPEC+ pact, no plan to up own output -WAM

Until now, OPEC+ has resisted calls from the United States and others to increase output, even as oil prices surge to more than $120 a barrel. The United Arab Emirates is committed to the OPEC+ agreement on monthly oil production and has not agreed to individually increase production outside that framework, UAE energy minister Suhail al-Mazrouei told state news agency WAM.

March 9, 2022

UAE committed to OPEC+ agreement and existing mechanism -UAE energy minister

The United Arab Emirates is committed to the OPEC+ agreement and its existing monthly production adjustment mechanism, the UAE energy minister, Suhail al-Mazrouei tweeted. “The UAE believes in the value OPEC+ brings to the oil market”. His comments came after UAE’s ambassador to Washington said his country favors an oil production increase and will be encouraging OPEC to consider higher output.

March 4, 2022

Italy looks to boost energy ties with Qatar in wake of Ukraine crisis

Energy Transition Minister Roberto Cingolani said that Italy aimed to rapidly cut more than half its Russian gas import and to be independent of Russian supplies within two or three years. However, “in an emergency period, one can fix a maximum price above which European operators cannot buy,” he warned, adding that the move was needed to prevent Russia’s Gazprom profiting from surging energy prices. Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio flew to Qatar on Saturday for two days of talks on boosting energy cooperation as Rome stepped up efforts in order to secure new gas supplies in light of the Ukraine crisis.

March 3, 2022

Higher oil prices boost Gulf markets, Aramco hits record high

Saudi Arabia’s benchmark share index ended 0.8% higher, with gains driven by Saudi Aramco which rose to a record high of 45 riyals and ended the session up nearly 3%. In the context of the war in Ukraine, “sanctions are pushing oil importers to look elsewhere for supplies at a time when the market is already struggling with rising demand and the sluggish supply policy laid out by OPEC,” said Daniel Takieddine, CEO MENA at BDSwiss. Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Qatar have seen their index rise too. 

February 28, 2022

Oil settles higher on Russian supply disruption

Oil prices jumped on Monday as Western allies imposed more sanctions on Russia and blocked some Russian banks from a global payments system, which could cause severe disruption to its oil exports. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and allies led by Russia, a group known as OPEC+, are due to meet on Wednesday. The group is expected to stick to plans to add 400,000 barrels per day (bpd) of supply in April. Ahead of the meeting, OPEC+ revised down its forecast for the oil market surplus for 2022 by about 200,000 bpd to 1.1 million bpd, underscoring market tightness.

February 28, 2022

No consultations with Saudi concerning U.S. potential release of oil reserves – source

No consultations have taken place with Saudi Arabia regarding a potential release of oil reserves by the United States and its allies, a senior Gulf source with knowledge of the matter said. “It is not customary for Saudi Arabia or key OPEC+ producers to conduct consultations outside the group on oil policy, especially prior to a meeting,” the source explained.

February 28, 2022

Iraq’s Kurdistan region presidency rejects federal court’s oil and gas ruling

The Kurdistan Region’s presidency in Iraq rejected on Monday a federal court ruling on its oil and gas activities, and said the region would continue to exercise its constitutional rights on the matter. The Kurdish regional government (KRG) has been developing oil and gas resources independently of the federal government, and, in 2007, enacted its own law that established the directives by which the region would administer these resources. The Kurdistan region produced 425,000 barrels per day of oil in January, according to a document by state-owned marketer Somo seen by Reuters. 

February 28, 2022

Saudi Arabia’s sovereign fund lays out plan for green financing

Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund (PIF) laid out plans on Monday for raising green debt as the world’s top oil exporter strives to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2060. The PIF is at the center of Saudi Arabia’s ambitious plans to create new sectors and diversify revenues away from hydrocarbons. PIF published its green finance framework that will allow it to tap world markets to issue debt linked to environmentally friendly goals, including through the sale of green bonds.The Saudi government is also preparing its own green debt sales. Finance Minister Mohammed al-Jadaan said in October that advisers had been appointed but the format had not yet been decided.

February 27, 2022

Bahrain Says ‘Everything’s on the Table’ for Oil Privatizations

Bahrain is in the process of hiring advisers to help sell stakes in some of its oil and gas assets as the Gulf’s smallest economy looks to open up an industry closed to foreign investments for decades. Nogaholding, which owns Bahrain’s oil and gas assets, is due to appoint a consultant and a financial adviser to work on a national energy strategy. Bahrain would be following a strategy similar to its larger neighbors, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Nogaholding is also in the process of refinancing a $1.6 billion loan, which includes some environment, sustainability, and governance targets. 

February 27, 2022

Saudi crown prince says kingdom still committed to OPEC+ oil agreement with Russia

Saudi Arabia remains committed to OPEC+ agreement, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman told French President Emmanuel Macron on February 27, in an endorsement for the bloc’s alliance with Russia amid that nation’s invasion of Ukraine. 

February 27, 2022

OPEC+ seen sticking to plan despite price shock from Ukraine crisis

OPEC+ will probably stick to its plan of only gradually increasing oil production when it meets this week, according to several delegates, even after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine sent prices surging. Saudi Arabia, the world’s biggest oil exporter, is saying it’s committed to the OPEC+ agreement. The kingdom and neighboring UAE are among the few OPEC members with significant spare output capacity. 

February 27, 2022

OPEC+ partners to decide whether to pump more oil

The Russian Foreign Ministry has announced that the UAE and Russian foreign ministers would meet today in Moscow to discuss “further expanding multifaceted Russia-UAE relations.” Gulf powerhouse Saudi Arabia has not reacted to the invasion, like the UAE, Bahrain, and Oman. Kuwait and Qatar have only denounced the violence, stopping short of criticizing Moscow. Gulf countries “understand that they need to diversify their alliances to compensate for the perceived withdrawal of the United States from the region,” Gadel told AFP.

February 25, 2022

Iran to enrich uranium to 20% even after nuclear deal – nuclear chief

Iran will continue to enrich uranium to 20% purity even after sanctions on it are lifted and a 2015 nuclear deal with world powers is revived. “(Uranium) enrichment … continues with a maximum ceiling of 60%, which led Westerners to rush to negotiations, and it will continue with the lifting of sanctions by both 20% and 5%,” said the head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization, Mohammad Eslami. Yet, Iranian officials had told Reuters earlier that Iran had agreed to suspend its 20% and 60% enrichment if an agreement is reached in the Vienna talks to salvage the 2015 pact. 

February 25, 2022

OPEC+ deal seen on track despite Russia’s Ukraine invasion -sources

A deal among OPEC+ oil producers including Russia is showing no cracks so far after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, OPEC+ sources said, and the group is likely to stick to a planned output rise the following week despite crude topping $100 a barrel. A Russian oil source said on Wednesday, OPEC+ has held some informal talks during which Moscow explained its position on Ukraine and the other OPEC+ countries seemed to show a neutral stance.

February 24, 2022

Oil tops $105/bbl after Russia attacks Ukraine

Oil prices jumped on Thursday, with Brent rising above $105 a barrel for the first time since 2014 before easing, after Russia’s attack on Ukraine exacerbated concerns about disruptions to global energy supply. Analysts say Brent is likely to remain above $100 a barrel until significant alternative supplies become available from U.S. shale or Iran, for example. The United States and Iran have been engaged in indirect nuclear talks in Vienna that could lead to the removal of sanctions on Iranian oil sales. Iran’s top security official, Ali Shamkhani, said on Twitter that it is possible to achieve a good nuclear agreement with Western powers after significant progress in negotiations.

February 24, 2022

Aramco shares rise to record high as oil tops $100 for first time since 2014

Saudi Aramco shares surged as much as 4.2% to a record high 42.25 riyals ($11.26)  as oil prices breached the $100 a barrel after Russia attacked Ukraine.

February 22, 2022

Qatar’s LNG production capacity to reach 126 mln T a year by 2027, says Emir

Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani said on Tuesday that Qatar’s liquefied natural gas production capacity will rise to 126 million tonnes a year by 2027. Al Thani touted a carbon capture facility Qatar is building – the biggest in the Middle East – he said, which will isolate and store 2.5 million tonnes of carbon per year in four years. By 2030, the facility will isolate 9 million tonnes per year. He adds that Qatar is also ready for cooperation with Iran and Iraq on the gas market. Meanwhile, Iran’s President Ebrahim Raisi said Iran has high capacity for gas production for domestic use and exports and will play an important role in international markets.

February 22, 2022

Iraq aims to shift investment priority from oil to gas sector, minister says

Iraq aims to shift its investment priority from the oil sector to gas for the first time in the country’s history, oil minister Ihsan Abdul-Jabbar said on Tuesday at a gas exporters conference in Doha. This would allow Iraq to increase its production of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) and distillates, Abdul-Jabbar added.

February 22, 2022

Qatar says “almost impossible” to quickly replace Russian supplies to Europe

Neither Qatar nor any other single country has the capacity to replace Russian gas supplies to Europe with liquefied natural gas (LNG) in the event of disruption due to a conflict between Russia and Ukraine, Qatar’s energy minister said on Tuesday. With most of Qatari volumes locked into long-term contracts mostly to Asian buyers, the amount of divertable volumes that can be shipped to Europe is only 10-15%, Saad al-Kaabi added. “Most of the LNG is tied to long-term contracts and destinations that are very clear. So, to replace that sum of volume that quickly is almost impossible”. Thus, Qatar and other countries such as Japan have recently been approached by the United States to reroute gas supplies to Europe in case conflict escalates.

February 22, 2022

Iraq aims to shift investment priority from oil to gas sector, minister says

Iraq aims to shift its investment priority from the oil sector to gas for the first time in the country’s history, oil minister Ihsan Abdul-Jabbar said on Tuesday at a gas exporters conference in Doha. This would allow Iraq to increase its production of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) and distillates, Abdul-Jabbar added.

February 22, 2022

Qatar says “almost impossible” to quickly replace Russian supplies to Europe

Neither Qatar nor any other single country has the capacity to replace Russian gas supplies to Europe with liquefied natural gas (LNG) in the event of disruption due to a conflict between Russia and Ukraine, Qatar’s energy minister said on Tuesday. With most of Qatari volumes locked into long-term contracts, mostly to Asian buyers, the amount of divertable volumes that can be shipped to Europe is only 10-15%, Saad al-Kaabi, the energy minister, added. “Most of the LNG is tied to long-term contracts and destinations that are very clear. So, to replace that sum of volume that quickly is almost impossible.” Thus, Qatar and other countries, such as Japan, have recently been approached by the United States to reroute gas supplies to Europe in case conflict escalates.

February 21, 2022

OPEC+ compliance with oil output cuts near 130% in January, source says

As producers fell further behind their target and signaling a tight market that could push prices higher, OPEC+ is undoing output cuts put in place after the pandemic slashed demand. The 129% compliance in January cited by the source would be the highest in more than two years and marks a rise from 122% in December and 117% in November. Compliance from OPEC countries was 133% in January, while non-OPEC producers stood at 123%, according to data provided by the source. The head of International Energy Agency’s (IEA) Fatih Birol has called on OPEC+ to narrow the gap between their oil production targets and actual output.

February 18, 2022

Oil falls on prospect of Iran oil sanctions easing

Brent posted a small 0.9% rise in its ninth weekly gain, while WTI fell 1.7% week, snapping an eight-week rally. Fears over possible supply disruptions resulting from the Russian military presence at Ukraine’s borders limited losses this week. The West has threatened Russia, a top oil and gas supplier, with new sanctions if it attacks Ukraine; Russia denies planning any attacks. The oil market rose slightly in after-hours trading after U.S. President Joe Biden said that he was convinced Russian President Vladimir Putin had made a decision to invade Ukraine in the coming days. A senior European Union official said that a U.S.-Iranian deal to revive Iran’s 2015 nuclear agreement with world powers was close but success depended on the political will of those involved. Adding pressure onto WTI, U.S. drillers added four oil rigs this week, with the rig count.

February 18, 2022

OPEC+ would seek to bring Iran into oil supply deal

OPEC+ will work to integrate Iran into its oil supply-limiting accord should an agreement be reached on reviving its nuclear deal with world powers, sources close to the group said, seeking to avoid market share competition that could hit prices. Due to the impact of sanctions on its exports, Iran is exempt from the existing deal between the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies, known as OPEC+, to limit oil supply. While that exemption allows Iran to boost output, OPEC+ would eventually seek to bring Iran into the accord, sources said. OPEC+ sources have also made the point that extra Iranian supply could also help plug the hole in OPEC’s output target misses.

February 17, 2022

Oil slides 2% as Iran talks offset Ukraine crisis

Oil prices fell about 2% on Thursday as talks to resurrect a nuclear deal with Iran entered their final stages and could unlock more crude supplies, but losses were limited by tension between top energy exporter Russia and the West over Ukraine. “(The) oil market is locked in a tug of war between Iranian sanctions relief and Russian-Ukraine tensions,” said Stephen Brennock at brokerage PVM Oil. However, tension over a possible Russian invasion of Ukraine continued to support oil markets because of the potential disruption to energy supplies.

February 17, 2022

Qatar Energy sells April al-Shaheen at record premiums – sources

Qatar Energy has sold al-Shaheen crude loading in April at record premiums, two trade sources who track the grade closely said on Thursday. The four cargoes were sold in a tender at an average premium of $4.44 a barrel to Dubai quotes, several trade sources said, a jump from $2.67 on average last month.

February 17, 2022

Qatar LNG exports down on mega trains outage

Exports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) from Qatar’s Ras Laffan liquefaction plant have been lower over the past few days as two of the facility’s mega trains have been down. Qatar, one of the world’s top LNG producers, has recently been approached by the U.S. to reroute gas supplies to Europe in case Russia attacks Ukraine and the United States imposes sanctions on Moscow. It has most of its volumes locked up under long-term contracts mostly to Asian buyers but also sends cargoes to Europe. Qatar Energy plans to grow its LNG output by 40% with the north field expansion project, expected to come online by 2026.

February 16, 2022

IEA’s Birol again urges OPEC+ to narrow gap between oil targets and output

OPEC+ oil producers have raised their output target by 400,000 barrels per day (bpd) each month since August as they unwind production curbs. However, they have repeatedly failed to hit those targets as some producers struggle to restore output. The IEA in its last monthly report said the gap between the target and output in January had widened to 900,000 bpd. The UAE Energy minister, Suhail al-Mazrouei, stated tensions between Russia and the West were driving oil prices rather than a fundamental shortage that would warrant accelerated output increases.

February 16, 2022

Kurdish PM, Qatari energy minister discuss Kurdistan’s “huge gas potential”

The Prime Minister of Iraq’s Kurdistan region Masrour Barzani said on Wednesday that he explored Kurdistan’s “huge gas potential” in a meeting with Qatar’s Minister of State for Energy Affairs Saad al-Kaabi. Delegations from both governments also discussed energy investment, renewables, and regional energy cooperation, Barzani said on Twitter.

February 16, 2022

U.S. crude stockpiles rise despite Cushing draw, record fuel demand – EIA

Fuel stocks fell and demand surpassed the previous week’s record, with total product supplied over four weeks averaging 22.1 million barrels per day, according to the EIA. The U.S. economy has recovered rapidly from the coronavirus-induced recession, boosting demand for fuels.

February 16, 2022

South Korea, Iran discuss resuming oil trade, unfreezing funds

South Korea and Iran have held working-level talks on resuming imports of Iranian crude oil and unfreezing Iranian funds held in the East Asian nation, South Korea’s foreign ministry said on Wednesday. South Korea was previously one of Iran’s leading Asian oil customers. Iran and South Korea are also discussing the trading of crude oil and oil products, on the condition sanctions are lifted as progress is made in nuclear negotiations, the statement said.

February 14, 2022

Iraq’s $27 bln TotalEnergies deal stuck over contract wrangling

A $27 billion deal between France’s TotalEnergies and Iraq that Baghdad hoped would reverse the exit of oil majors from the country has stalled amid disputes over terms and risks being scrapped by the country’s new government. Iraq has a history of international companies complaining with poor revenue on investments in the country. TotalEnergies agreed last year to invest in four oil, gas and renewables projects in the southern Basra region over 25 years. The deal, signed by Iraq’s oil ministry in September 2021, followed a visit from French President Emmanuel Macron. The terms, which have not been made public or previously reported, have raised concerns from Iraqi politicians, and according to sources close to the deal are unprecedented for Iraq. A group of Shi’ite lawmakers wrote to the oil ministry in January demanding details of the deal and asking why it was signed without competition and transparency, according to a copy of the letter seen by Reuters.

February 14, 2022

UAE energy minister says infrastructure well-protected against attacks

UAE energy minister Suhail al-Mazrouei said on Monday that infrastructure in the UAE was well-protected against attacks and that the country had diversified its electricity infrastructure and has spare capacity. In recent weeks, the Iran-aligned Houthis have waged an unprecedented string of largely failed missile strikes on UAE targets that have triggered Emirati and U.S. air defenses and seen American troops briefly taking shelter.

February 12, 2022

Saudi Arabia transfers Aramco shares worth $80 bln to state fund

Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has transferred 4% of Saudi Aramco shares worth $80 billion to the kingdom’s sovereign wealth fund, the government said on Sunday. The shares will bolster the Public Investment Fund’s (PIF) strong financial position and high credit ratings in the medium term, the crown prince said in a statement. The fund is the prince’s vehicle of choice to transform the Saudi economy and diversify away from oil revenues.

February 11, 2022

Biggest Energy Firms in UAE Boost Spending on Surging Demand

The largest listed energy companies in the United Arab Emirates are ramping up spending to meet soaring demand for everything from fuels to electricity. ADNOC Drilling Co. boosted capital expenditure by 34% last year to $505 million, the unit of Abu Dhabi’s government-owned oil giant said in an earnings statement on Friday.To boost renewable energy production in the region, Taqa is developing solar power plants and announced plans to buy into Abu Dhabi’s largest renewable energy company. Surging oil and natural gas prices also helped the company bolster profit from its own fields, mainly in the U.K. North Sea. Taqa and ADNOC, which is also buying into the emirate’s clean energy producer, plan to invest globally to more than double the amount of green energy they produce. They are targeting 50 gigawatts of green power capacity by the end of this decade.

February 10, 2022

Biden, Saudi King Discussed OPEC+, Oil Stability and Yemen

U.S. President Joe Biden and King Salman of Saudi Arabia discussed energy supplies in the face of soaring fuel prices and developments in the Middle East, including Iran and Yemen, in a telephone call on Wednesday. The two leaders committed to ensuring the stability of global energy supplies, the White House said in a statement. Last week, OPEC+ agreed to stick to moderate rises in its oil output, with the group struggling to meet existing targets and wary of responding to calls on its strained capacity for more crude from top consumers to cap surging prices. High oil prices are a risk to the Biden administration ahead of November’s congressional elections in which his fellow Democrats will defend slim majorities in the Senate and U.S. House of Representatives. A U.S. source familiar with the call said, “Saudi Arabia has historically played a vital role in ensuring global energy markets are well supplied to support strong and resilient economies. Oil has also been supported by the tension in Ukraine as Russia has put more than 100,000 troops on its borders.

February 10, 2022

Iraq may import Qatari gas in 15 months if talks, infrastructure finalized

Importing the gas includes building the infrastructure and this will take at least a year to 15 months, depending on the agreement. This needs to happen because Iraq cannot continue to “rely on one source for gas.”  Iraq imports Iranian gas and electricity to plug power shortages, but supply from its neighbor has been intermittent due to technical and financial problems. Iran cut or reduced gas and electricity supply to Iraq last year and in recent months, prompting Iraq to look for alternatives such as Qatari gas. Iraq didn’t receive any gigawatts last summer and current gas supply is 8 MMcf/d. One issue is the lack of penalties in the contract in case of non-supply, Karim added. The electricity ministry has also signed agreements to import power from Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Turkey and the grid of the six-member Gulf Cooperation Council via Kuwait. GCC countries include Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Oman and the UAE

February 9, 2022

UAE Expands Strategic Oil Hub To Counter Iranian Threat

The announcement, that deliveries have now begun on the Fujairah Terminal expansion by Abu Dhabi (AD) Ports Group, positioned UAE’s Fujairah as an alternative global crude oil storage facility and transit hub to the perennially troublesome Strait of Hormuz. This push from Fujairah comes after the finalization in July 2021 of Iran’s own game-changing crude oil storage, transport and delivery mechanism, the Jask Oil Terminal and the 42-inch Guriyeh-Jask pipeline. The Guriyeh-Jask pipeline allows Tehran the option of disrupting all other oil supplies that travel through the Strait of Hormuz – around 35 percent of the world’s total.Part of the positive backdrop for the continued expansion of the Fujairah hub was always expected to be the trade flows coming out of the Dubai Multi-Commodities Centre, with more storage capacity allowing traders greater flexibility in their deals, and a very supportive financial infrastructure created by the Fujairah authorities. This proved to be the case and Fujairah further stands to benefit from the ongoing rise in volumes traded over the recently established Abu Dhabi-based ICE Futures Abu Dhabi (IFAD), with its focus on the trading of futures contracts for the light, sweet Murban crude oil that constituted around half of the UAE’s total near-4 million bpd crude oil production before the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020

February 8, 2022

India’s top refiner raises Iraq oil supplies to offset Mexico cuts – sources

Indian Oil Corp (IOC), the country’s top refiner, will increase crude purchases from Iraq by 11.5% in 2022 to 390,000 barrels per day (bpd), partly to make up for a shortfall from Mexico and a possible supply cut from Kuwait, two sources familiar with the matter said. IOC has resorted to buying higher volumes from Iraq as Mexico is curbing supplies as it opens a new refinery, sources said. Iraq is the top supplier of oil to India and its market share there is set to rise as another refiner Hindustan Petroleum Corp will also buy more crude from the Middle Eastern nation.

February 8, 2022

UAE’s ADNOC mulls sale of green bonds as it seek ESG funds

Abu Dhabi’s state oil producer is considering a sale of green bonds for the first time. ADNOC is speaking to banks about a possible green issuance, the people said. The company, which pumps almost all the crude in the UAE, may opt instead for sustainability-linked bonds, which provide more flexibility than green bonds because they’re not tied to specific projects, said the people. ADNOC is a crucial part of the UAE’s net-zero target. The company is planning to spend billions of dollars on technology to capture carbon and manufacture hydrogen, a fuel which emits only water vapour when burned. It’s also involved in the UAE’s strategy to ramp up solar power through renewable-energy firm Masdar.

February 8, 2022

Middle East Crude Benchmarks jump to highest since November on Asia demand

Middle East crude benchmarks Oman and Dubai jumped to their highest since November on Tuesday as robust refining margins spurred demand in Asia. Complex refining margins in Asia are at their highest in more than three months, boosted by strong profits for gasoline, middle distillates and low-sulphur fuel oil. Brent’s premium to Dubai crude is also at its widest since November, making Atlantic Basin grades more expensive for Asian refiners. Iran said on Monday that Washington had to make a “political decision” regarding lifting sanctions on the Islamic Republic as Tehran’s demand for their full removal to revive a 2015 nuclear deal with world powers was non-negotiable.

February 7, 2022

Oil drops near $90 mark after weeks-long rally

Oil dropped to trade near $90 a barrel, taking a breather from a rally that’s propelled crude to its highest since 2014. Futures in New York fell as much as 1.7 per cent on Monday after seven weekly gains in which oil’s gained 22 per cent. Diplomats are set to return to Vienna on Tuesday to resume Iran nuclear negotiations, which are viewed as a path to restore the nation’s sanctioned oil to global markets. On Friday, the US signed several waivers related to Iran’s civilian nuclear activities to ease diplomatic efforts. The potential for eventual Iranian barrels as well as crude being overbought from last week’s rally is prompting the market to take a “pause to refresh”

February 6, 2022

Saudi Arabia’s Aramco raises oil prices as crude surges

Aramco’s decision came days after OPEC+ opted to increase its daily crude production by 400,000 barrels a day next month. Many energy analysts doubt the group, led by Saudi Arabia and Russia, will add that much to the market because of the supply problems among some of its members. State firm Saudi Aramco increased all grades for its main market of Asia in March. The company raised its key Arab Light oil for the region by 60 cents from February to $2.80 per barrel above the benchmark it uses.

February 3, 2022

ADNOC confirms new gas discovery offshore Abu Dhabi

This discovery marks the first from Abu Dhabi’s offshore exploration concessions. “The discovery of material natural gas resources in Offshore Block 2 underscores how ADNOC’s expanded approach to strategic partnerships is enabling us to accelerate the exploration and development of Abu Dhabi’s untapped hydrocarbon resources and create long-term value for the UAE,” said Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology and ADNOC Managing Director and Group CEO.

February 2, 2022

Qatar can’t secure Europe’s gas supply unilaterally, says minister

Can Qatar supply extra gas to Europe if Russian flows are disrupted? As one of the world’s largest producers of liquefied gas (LNG), the Gulf state has become an essential ally of the West. Expectations are that Doha will step in if there are disruptions to gas supplies to Europe from Russia in the event of an escalation of tension with Moscow. Qatar is also seen as a long-term solution to Europe’s reliance on Russian gas. A major complication in the short term is that most of Qatar’s gas is shipped to Asia and China where the Gulf state’s customers agree to fixed, long-term contracts.

February 2, 2022

OPEC+ agrees on another gradual oil-output hike for March

OPEC and its allies agreed to make another modest output increase in March, sticking to their plan even as the failure of several members to deliver the scheduled monthly supply hikes stokes a rally in crude prices. After a brief meeting on Wednesday, the 23-nation coalition rubber-stamped the nominal revival of 400,000 barrels a day for March, according to a statement posted on its website. Widespread difficulties in restoring supplies increasingly place the burden on the group’s Gulf nations: Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Iraq and Kuwait. That’s leaving traders anxious over the spare capacity available to cover any disruptions, whether deeper losses in Libya or another attack like last month’s drone strike in Abu Dhabi.

January 31, 2022

Iranian oil tanker to discharge 2 mln barrels in Venezuela, a document reveals

An Iranian supertanker carrying about 2 million barrels of condensate this week began discharging at Venezuelan state-run oil company PDVSA’s main oil port. Last year, the two state companies that are under U.S. sanctions exchanged some 4.82 million barrels of condensate for 5.55 million barrels of heavy crude, mostly transported in Iran-flagged vessels. Condensate is an extremely light oil.

January 27, 2022

Aramco CEO says energy transition “not going smoothly”

Although acknowledging the emergency to shift toward renewable energies, Saudi Aramco Chief Executive Amin Nasser said that investment in oil and gas was needed to run alongside new energy investments until the latter can realistically support rising consumption. Aramco aims to achieve net zero emissions from its operations by 2050 while also building hydrocarbon capacity and expanding its maximum sustained production capacity to 13 million barrels per day. Saudi Arabia’s ambitious goal of ‘net zero’ emissions of greenhouse gasses – mostly produced by burning fossil fuels – by 2060 had to go hand in hand with new energies as demand for conventional energy would likely prevail for, “quite some time”. 

 

January 27, 2022

Oil dips from seven-year high as Russia tensions offset Fed tightening

Oil prices eased after Brent crude hit a seven-year high above $90 a barrel, while the market balanced concerns about tight worldwide supply with expectations the U.S. Federal Reserve will soon tighten monetary policy. U.S. crude fell 20 cents to $87.15 a barrel in a volatile session with both contracts see-sawing between positive and negative territory, amid tensions between Russia and the West and threats to the United Arab Emirates from Yemen’s Houthi movement that had added to oil market jitters. The market is starting to turn its attention to a Feb. 2 meeting of OPEC+, likely to stick with a planned rise in its oil output target for March. It has raised its output target each month since August by 400,000 barrels per day (bpd) as it unwinds record production cuts made in 2020.

January 26, 2022

Power grid link between Saudi Arabia, Iraq to produce 1 gigawatt of energy initially – state news

Following the memorandum reached by the both countries earlier this week, the power grid link between Saudi Arabia and Iraq is expected to produce one gigawatt of energy during the initial phase, the Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman al-Saud told Iraq’s state news agency INA

January 26, 2022

Oman launches first Middle East electricity spot market

Oman has formally launched the first in the Middle East electricity spot market. Concerned about increasing the efficiency of power procurement, the spot market will enable licensed generators for the first time to offer their surplus capacity at the most competitive rate. Responding to household energy costs – sensitive in the country that saw protests over unemployment – and to protests that occured, Omani finance minister Sultan al-Habsi has been parallelly reviewing electricity and water prices. Oman’s government also decided to cap power tariffs for residential consumers throughout 2022 at December 2021 levels.

January 26, 2022

EXCLUSIVE Qatar could reroute some gas to Europe with U.S. mediation – source

Qatar will need help from the United States to persuade Doha’s natural gas buyers to reroute some supplies to Europe in case a Russia-Ukraine conflict disrupts Russian deliveries to the continent. The U.S. administration has approached Doha and other major energy producers to see if they can help in case Russia attacks Ukraine – opening a new chapter in reviving JCPOA in favor of Iran. Doha can send some additional spare gas to Europe. Realistically, however, lacking spare supply and a potential reluctance of Qatari gas consumers will be a major issue as most volumes are contracted under long-term deals. The European Union needs to think about committing to long-term LNG contracts to avoid future supply shocks.

January 25, 2022

Saudi and Iraq to sign MoU on linking power grids -Saudi ministry

Saudi Arabia and Iraq are going to sign a memorandum of understanding to link the power grids of the two countries, the Saudi energy ministry announced on Twitter – expanding the recent attempts of normalizing markets in Iraq beyond fossil fuels sectors. 

January 23, 2022

Iraq schedules crude shipments for March loading amid strong demand-oil official

Iraq has already scheduled oil shipments for loading in March due to projections of strong demand, Ali Nizar, deputy head of Iraq’s State Organization for Marketing of Oil reported. Ali Nizar put his faith in OPEC regulation. OPEC+ aim to raise output by 400,000 bpd a month is still conflicting with a production that has increased by less than that as some producers struggle to pump more. The market could need additional quantities of oil and OPEC+ will offer more to the market if needed,turning into an advantage to rise the attractiveness of markets. Iraq’s average oil exports are expected to rise to 3.3 million barrels per day in February, from 3.2 million barrels per day in January.

January 21, 2022

OPEC’s share of Indian oil imports falls to lowest in at least 15 yrs

OPEC’s share of Indian oil imports fell in 2021 to the lowest in more than a decade despite a 4% rebound in annual crude purchases by the world’s third biggest oil importer. The surge of Covid cases does not seem to negatively affect the imports that are now expected to rise further – because of the high margin level of the refiners who had to cut crude oil processing for months as lockdowns hit gasoil and jet fuel consumption. India halted imports from Venezuela under pressure from U.S. sanctions and Middle Eastern oil accounted for about 62% of India’s overall imports, India has faced difficulties to import crude from Venezuela and Iran. Indian buyers have turned to the United States, Canada, Guyana and some small producers in Africa for supplies. Generally, OPEC’s share shrunk as refiners increased imports from Canada and the United States, at the expense of Africa and the Middle East.

January 20, 2022

Saudi Arabia’s SABIC launches U.S. Gulf Coast project with ExxonMobil

SABIC signed a joint venture project with ExxonMobil in the U.S. Gulf Coast. The project involves an ethylene production unit and has begun commercial operations.  The company announced plans on Sept. 19 to establish an ethylene production unit with annual capacity of about 1.8 million tonnes, SABIC said in a bourse statement. The unit will feed two polyethylene production units. This commercial deal outlines the increasing economic trend that is taking over the Gulf region: the rise of active competitiveness in the petrochemical sector. Pet-chem has found itself becoming increasingly competitive with regards to Iraq and KSA, while Iran is expected to join the race soon too.

January 19, 2022

China reports first official Iranian oil imports since Dec 2020

China reported the first imports of Iranian crude oil in a year despite ongoing sanctions by the United States governmenty. China brought in 260,312 tonnes of Iranian crude oil in December, according to data from the General Administration of Chinese Customs, which last recorded Iranian oil inflows in December 2020 at 520,000 tonnes. It was not immediately clear which company brought in the latest cargo, which is equal to the amount of oil that would fit onto one very large crude carrier (VLCC) tanker, and which terminal it was discharged into. Unofficially, China’s imports of Iranian oil had held above 500,000 barrels per day on average between August and October. Imports from Iran have accounted for about 6% of China’s crude oil imports, according to shipping data and trader estimates.

January 19, 2022

Abu Dhabi’s Masdar signs green hydrogen deals with Engie, TotalEnergies

Masdar has signed a deal to develop a green hydrogen production plant in the United Arab Emirates with France’s Engie and Fertiglobe. In a separate statement, it said it had also agreed with TotalEnergies and Siemens to co-develop a project for sustainable aviation fuel using green hydrogen in Masdar City. Masdar, Engie, Fertiglobe and the state-owned Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) aim to explore the co-development of an up to 200 megawatt (MW) capacity plant, including the construction of an operational green hydrogen production facility by 2025 in Al Ruwais, Abu Dhabi. Fertiglobe will be the sole long-term user of the hydrogen, which will be used to produce green ammonia. Engie and Masdar formed a $5 billion partnership in December to explore green hydrogen development in the UAE, aiming for at least 2 gigawatts of production capacity by 2030 – recalling us how the world geopolitical contest and energy users looking to cut greenhouse gas emissions have made the green hydrogen touted by some as a key fuel.  Competitiveness has become a major feature for renewables amid Gulf monarchies – deepening economic rivalry especially between the UAE and Saudi Arabia. UAE Energy Minister Suhail al-Mazrouei added his country aims to capture around a quarter of the global market for the fuel, while Saudi Arabia’s energy minister had said in October the kingdom wants to be the world’s top hydrogen supplier.

January 18, 2022

Oil hit 7-year highs as tight supply bites

Oil prices on Tuesday climbed to their highest since 2014 – $100-per-barrel oil is not out of reach, OPEC sources say. The investors worried about global political tensions involving major producers such as the United Arab Emirates and Russia that could exacerbate the already tight supply outlook. The risk added a premium to prices during the session, following Yemen’s Houthi group attack on the UAE – the Houthi movement has warned of the targeting against more facilities. ADNOC said it had activated business continuity plans to ensure uninterrupted supply of products to its local and international customers after an incident at its Mussafah fuel depot. 

January 18, 2022

UAE’s AMEA Power to raise clean energy output to 5,000 MW in 3 years -WAM

AMEA Power, a subsidiary of United Arab Emirates-based Al Nowais Investments aims to raise its output of clean energy to 5,000 megawatts (MW) within the next three years. The agency added that the company’s production from renewable energy projects since its establishment has reached about 2,000 MW, the most effective sectors being solar and wind energy plants gathering 15 countries around, including Egypt, Jordan, Tunisia, Morocco and Mauritania.

January 18, 2022

Saudi SABIC plans petrochemicals plant in Jubail -CEO to Asharq TV

While entering competition over the petrochemicals market arises more and more among Gulf States’ goals, SABIC plans to build a petrochemicals plant in the city of Jubail on the gulf coast, after a similar plant in South Korea starts production by year-end, CEO Yousef Abdullah al-Benyan told Asharq TV on Tuesday. Al-Benyan added that the company views the Korean market as an opportunity to expand in Asia.

January 17, 2022

Sinopec gets first LNG cargo under new deal with Qatar – state media

While the Gulf monarchies are in quest of the monopoly on LNG market, China’s Sinopec Corp received its first cargo of liquefied natural gas under a new term supply deal signed last year with Qatar Petroleum. The tanker Al Sahla, carrying 94,000 tonnes of Qatari gas, was discharged into Sinopec’s Tianjin terminal. This is part of a deal signed with Qatar Petroleum last March for an annual supply of 2 million tonnes for 10 years, with supply starting this month.

January 10, 2022

Saudi bank allocates $200 mln to finance Tunisian imports of Saudi oil derivatives

The Saudi Export and Import Bank has allocated $200 mln to finance Tunisian imports of Saudi oil derivatives, the Economy Ministry said.

2021
December 30, 2021

Saudi Arabia may set deep crude price cuts for Asia in February

Starting in February, Saudi Arabia is predicted to implement price cuts in crude oil sold in Asia after spot prices sank this month and tight supplies appear to be easing. Prices for oil of all grades are expected to go down by more than $1. At the same time, demand is predicted to fall in Asia due to seasonal maintenance in Asian refineries.

December 28, 2021

Iran sees Azadegan oilfield development completed by 2023

The Iranian Oil Ministry announced that the development of Iran’s largest oilfield, Azadegan – in a very strategic location near the Turkish and Iraqi borders – is to be completed by mid-2023. According to the ministry’s Twitter account, the total production is estimated to reach  320,000 barrels per day. To reduce the sanctions-related economic strife, in July 2020, a unit of state-run NIOC signed a deal with the local company Petropars to raise output capacity to 320,000 bpd from 140,000 bpd within 30 months at the Azadegan field, in order to increase the export to Iraq. The report came as indirect talks on the 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and the United States resumed. 

December 27, 2021

Brent rises towards $77 as Omicron concern eases

Helped by OPEC+ suppliers, Brent crude oil rose towards $77 on Monday due to hopes that the Omicron COVID-19 variant will have a limited impact on global demand in 2022, even as US crude came under pressure from flight cancellations amid surging cases. Brent has risen by more than 45 per cent this year, supported by recovering demand and supply cuts by the OPEC+. The fall of oil prices urges action to maintain the supply at the right level. Investors eye the OPEC+ meeting on January 4, in which the producer alliance will decide whether to go ahead with a planned 400,000 barrels per day (bpd) production increase in February. OPEC+ stuck to its plans at its last meeting to boost output for January despite Omicron.

December 23, 2021

Aramco Trading signs fuel deal with Australia’s United Petroleum

Aramco has signed an agreement with Australian retailer United Petroleum for potential long-term fuel supply, product storage and other business opportunities. The deal signed is a non-binding memorandum of understanding, under which ATC intends to explore refined fuel sales to United Petroleum to meet fast-growing demand in Australia. The companies plan to explore product storage and logistics collaboration, while also assessing areas of potential cooperation both within and beyond the energy sector.

December 20, 2021

OPEC+ produces below target in November as compliance rises

OPEC+ compliance with oil production cuts rose to 117% in November from 116% a month earlier, indicating production levels remain well below agreed targets. Compliance from the 10 OPEC countries participating in the production cuts reached 122%, with participating non-OPEC countries achieving 107%, data seen by Reuters showed. The IEA said in its December oil market report that OPEC+ missed its production targets by 650,000 barrels per day (bpd) last month, compared with 730,000 bpd in October. While Western African oil producers are still suffering from underinvestment and struggling to pump sufficiently, stable production of Russian oil and gas condensate has allowed Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak to state that Russian oil production will reach pre-pandemic levels by May 2022.

December 13, 2021

Saudi Arabia plans $100 bln renewables investment, says minister

The Saudi energy minister announced the kingdom’s plans to invest 380 billion riyals ($101 billion) in renewable energy projects and a further 142 billion riyals in energy distribution through 2030, thus revealing the strategy of energy policies in Saudi Arabia – to counter Covid-related economic disaster, the supply issue fueled by oil-influencing countries engaged in tensions, and as an instrument for diversification against “oil curse.”.

December 12, 2021

Oman’s PDO-S signs first contract with Tethys

The services unit of Petroleum Development Oman (PDO), signed its first commercial contract with Tethys Oil Oman Onshore Limited for Seismic Acquisition in Block 56 -Twitter.

December 12, 2021

Saudi oil revenues seen at 558 bln riyals in 2021, up 35% -document

Despite the worldwide concern over supply disruption, Saudi Arabia released a budget document including expectations for its oil revenues to reach 558 billion riyals ($148.75 billion) in 2021, up around 35% from the previous year.

December 12, 2021

Saudi crown prince says PIF to invest 150 billion riyal locally in 2022 -SPA

Saudi Arabia’s crown prince announced that the kingdom’s sovereign wealth fund (PIF) invested 84 billion riyal ($22.39 billion) locally in 2021 and it was planning to invest another 150 billion riyal in 2022. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman was quoted by state news agency SPA as saying the 2022 budget aims to achieve post-COVID-19 pandemic financial and economic targets for the country. 

December 10, 2021

OPEC+ to continue to restore oil supply to meet growing demand -Novak

 

While the tensions in Ukraine and in Yemen cause high disruption in supply to the energy market, Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak affirmed the OPEC+ alliance of oil producers’ efforts to restore supply to meet growing demand, based on the relatively low volatility on the oil market at the moment.

December 10, 2021

Qatar energy and ExxonMobil sign Cyprus energy exploration deal

After being granted the right to be the first Gulf nation engaged in oil exploitation in Eastern Mediterranean Sea, a consortium consisting of Qatar Energy and ExxonMobil has signed an agreement with Cyprus for energy exploration and production sharing in Block 5 in the southeast of the island, Qatari News Agency said on Friday, further intensifying tensions with strategic ally Turkey that has shown hostility to the Mediterranean island state since 2016 and had reached a warlike paroxysm in summer 2019.

December 9, 2021

Iraq says reduction of Iranian gas supplies lead to power loss

Iraq’s Ministry of Electricity said on Thursday that a reduction in gas supplies from Iran had cost a power loss of around 3,400 megawatts, the state news agency reported. This declaration reveals the significant Iraqi reliance on Iranian energy resources for years, as well as the increasing need to diversify the suppliers for fossil fuels. It is an effort of national political autonomy toward Iran as Iraq seeks to elect a new government, but also manifests a national goal to implement up-to-date facilities and export Iraqi oil to its neighbors. 

December 8, 2021

Qatar to join energy exploration in Eastern Mediterranean

Qatari oil and gas company, Qatar Energy, becomes the first energy company from the Gulf region that has been granted the rights to explore oil and gas in Cyprus’ offshore in the Eastern Mediterranean. Block 5 lies adjacent to block 10, which ExxonMobil and Qatar Energy also hold the exploration rights for. However, Turkey slammed Cyprus for violating its continental shelf by awarding an exploration license in the Mediterranean to ExxonMobil and Qatar Energy, adding it will not allow unauthorized exploration in its jurisdiction.

December 8, 2021

EXXON to expand partnerships with Qatar

ExxonMobil Qatar president stressed the rising sector of renewable energies for the future commercial strategy of the firm. Due to the current lack of technologies and “right policies”, ExxonMobil is primarily focused now where it has the greatest strengths. The firm conducts 20 projects globally to expand in sustainable development, including in Qatar. Hydrogen and biofuels will have application in some markets such as aviation and heavy transportation. To focus on CCS, hydrogen, and biofuels, ExxonMobil started a new company called ExxonMobil Low Carbon Solutions. Benefiting from a huge presence in LNG activities, the president of ExxonMobil shows significant interest in North Field expansion plans.

December 6, 2021

Omani, Saudi firms sign $30 bln in MoUs amid Saudi crown prince’s visit

Saudi firms and Omani firms owned by Oman’s investment authority and the private sector signed 13 MoUs in sectors including energy, renewable energy, pharmaceutical industries, petrochemicals, the storage and trading of petroleum products,  green hydrogen and mining sectors. 

December 4, 2021

France signs weapons mega-deal with UAE as Macron tours Gulf

France announced multibillion-euro deals to sell fighter planes and combat helicopters to the United Arab Emirates, aiming to boost military cooperation with its top ally in the Persian Gulf amid their shared concerns about Iran. The UAE is buying 80 upgraded Rafale warplanes, worth 16 billion euros ($18 billion), and 12 Airbus-built combat helicopters. Consequently, in a context of JCPOA revival and the Yemen civil war, whose outcomes may directly impact energy supply, France and the UAE will depend on stabilizing markets – even more with Russia at the doors of Ukraine.

December 2, 2021

White House welcomes OPEC’s plans to pump more oil

The U.S. government publicly welcomed a decision by OPEC and its allies to incrementally increase oil output, but added that the United States has no plans to reconsider its decision to release crude reserves. The decision by OPEC+ maintained an existing deal to increase output in January by 400,000 bpd. Biden administration officials have spent weeks publicly pressuring OPEC+ members to increase oil output to help lower energy prices in the United States, where inflation concerns have become a political problem. They also planned to sell 32 million barrels of crude from four Strategic Petroleum Reserve and pushed other countries to do the same in an effort to lower global prices. Asked if Washington would take another look at its decision to release reserves, a decision highly feared by OPEC+ members, J.Psaki was unequivocal: “We have no plans to reconsider.”

December 1, 2021

OPEC+ sees worsening oil surplus Q1, 2022 – document

An OPEC+ report foresees the oil surplus worsening to 2 million barrels per day (bpd) in January, 3.4 million bpd in February and 3.8 million bpd in March next year. Overall, it distinguishes two main causes for such a surplus: the impact of Omicron as jet-fuel related, particularly in Africa and Europe and disruption in transportation fuel demand within Europe.

November 30, 2021

Saudi Aramco’s January OSP jump to factor in OPEC+, omicron

Saudi Aramco and other Middle East producers are expected to raise official selling prices for crude loading in January on the back of a higher Dubai structure. But traders said that OPEC+ output, a resurgence of COVID-19 infection and the new Omicron variant could lead to moderate price increases on the back of cooling demand cues. Sources said that Saudi Aramco and other Middle East producers could raise prices by between 50 cents/b and $1.20/b across all Asia-bound grades. The discovery of Omicron has stalled an increase in crude oil prices, and the release of strategic petroleum reserves by the US and other economies such as India and Japan has put importance on the next meeting of the OPEC+ alliance to discuss output. That meeting will take place on December 2nd to discuss January production levels.

November 29, 2021

UAE’s ADNOC to supply full crude volumes to Asia buyers in Feb – sources

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) will supply full volumes of all crude grades to term customers in Asia in February for a third consecutive month. This comes ahead of an OPEC+ meeting on December 2nd to discuss 2022 output policy. The United Arab Emirates producer has restored full supplies to Asia since December after OPEC+ agreed to raise output by 400,000 barrels per day a month from August.

November 29, 2021

Saudi Aramco expects about 2 bcf/day in gas from Jafurah field, CEO says

The CEO of Saudi Aramco said that he expects its Jafurah gas field to produce approximately 2 billion cubic feet of gas per day by 2030. Saudi Arabia is working to develop its unconventional gas reserves, unconventional because they require advanced extraction methods such as shale gas. Saudi-owned Al Arabiya TV quoted the energy minister as saying that the cost of developing Jafoura field will be $24 billion, adding that Aramco signed agreements worth $10 billion for the development of the field. Jafurah is the kingdom’s largest unconventional non-oil associated gas field, with reserves estimated at 200 trillion cubic feet of raw gas.

November 28, 2021

Iran plans to boost oil output capacity to pre-sanctions levels by March 2022

Iran is ready to boost its crude oil capacity to 4 million b/d by March 2022, levels not seen since before the US withdrew from the nuclear deal and re-imposed sanctions on the country’s crude sales in 2018. “Our plan is to raise the oil production capacity to what it was before the sanctions by the end of the current [Iranian] year,” Mohsen Khojastehmehr, managing director of the state-owned National Iranian Oil Co. said. The Iranian year ends on March 20th, 2022. Natural gas is also part of the expansion, with one train in phase 14 of South Pars offshore gas field set to go on stream within two months. Also, phase 11 of the shared field with Qatar will become operational in the next Iranian year. Khojastehmehr said that oil and condensate exports have increased recently, without giving further details. The announcement came just as the next round of Iran nuclear talks, which could swing global oil supply by 1.5 million b/d next year, is set for Nov. 29 in Vienna after a five-month pause.

November 28, 2021

Aramco-backed SABIC to rely more on renewables amid 2050 net zero pledge

The CEO of Saudi Basic Industries Corp. said they plan to rely more on renewables in power generation for its operations as it seeks to meet a 2050 net zero carbon emissions pledge. Saudi Basic Industries Corp. is the Middle East’s biggest petrochemical maker and is 70% owned by Saudi Aramco. In late November SABIC signed a memorandum of understanding with the Saudi energy ministry in the field of developing renewable energy projects, providing a platform for SABIC to reach its net zero goal. Saudi Arabia plans to generate half of its power from renewables and the other half from natural gas by 2030. The kingdom also wants to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2060 while boosting its oil production.

November 25, 2021

Reliance, Aramco call off $15 bln deal amid valuation differences, sources say

Sources close to the matter say Reliance Industries and Saudi Aramco have called off a deal for the state oil giant to buy a stake in the oil-to-chemicals business of the Indian conglomerate due to valuation concerns. Aramco signed a non-binding agreement to buy a 20% stake in Reliance’s O2C business for $15 billion in 2019. Talks broke down over how much Reliance’s oil-to-chemicals (O2C) business should be valued as the world seeks to move away from fossil fuels and reduce emissions. Reliance will instead focus on signing multiple deals with companies to produce specialty chemicals for higher margins. The collapse of the deal reflects the changing global energy landscape as oil and gas companies shift away from fossil fuel to renewables.

November 22, 2021

Oman’s OQ, Kogas Tech ink agreement to explore green hydrogen opportunities

Oman’s state-owned energy company OQ signed on November 21 a memorandum of understanding with South Korea’s Kogas Tech to explore opportunities in the green hydrogen industry as Oman is looking to attract foreign investment to its clean energy projects. Oman is in talks with investors to build green ammonia and hydrogen projects in three free zones, a government official said in August. Oman is accelerating efforts to develop clean energy products as it seeks to supplement its energy industry as well as cater to the global demand for green ammonia and hydrogen. The authority has already signed a land reservation agreement with India’s renewables company ACME Solar Holding Private Limited to develop a green hydrogen and ammonia project in Duqm free zone and German energy company Uniper will join Oman’s Hyport Duqm renewable hydrogen project to provide engineering services and negotiate an exclusive offtake agreement for green ammonia from the facility.

November 22, 2021

Platts launches Middle East hydrogen prices as mega-projects underline region’s ambitions

S&P Global Platts has launched new low-carbon hydrogen assessments in the Middle East as the region strives to become a major exporter of the energy carrier and initial prices showed the Middle East amongst the cheapest producers of renewable hydrogen in the world, behind only Australia. The assessments track three production pathways in Oman, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the UAE. Announced projects in Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Oman are set to produce 3 million mt/year of hydrogen in the 2030s, with Oman’s 14-GW Al Wusta and Saudi’s 4-GW NEOM projects among the world’s most ambitious to date.

November 21, 2021

Iraq’s Lukoil-operated West Qurna 2 oil field to reach peak output in 2027

Iraq’s southern oil field of West Qurna 2, which is operated by Lukoil, is expected to reach peak production of 800,000 b/d by 2027, the country’s oil minister said. In May 2018, Lukoil signed a new development plan that provides for an oil production plateau of 800,000 b/d, according to the company’s website. The website also says that West Qurna 2 is one of the world’s largest oil fields with around 14 billion barrels of initial recoverable reserves and the field pumps about 9% of total Iraqi oil production. Lukoil also has submitted to Iraq’s oil ministry a preliminary development proposal for Eridu field, which may yield 250,000 b/d at peak output.

November 21, 2021

Iran, Azerbaijan eye joint development of oil and gas fields in Caspian Sea

Iranian oil minister Javad Owji said that Iran and Azerbaijan are looking at finalizing “soon” a number of energy deals, including joint development of an oil field in the Caspian Sea. Owji said, “Initial talks were held regarding [a] gas deal with Azerbaijan, gas swap from neighboring countries with Azerbaijan, the contract for transfer of gas to Nakhichevan and development of oil fields in the Caspian Sea”, and that “some agreements were made”. Azerbaijan’s Nakhichevan enclave, located between Armenia, Iran and Turkey, receives gas from Iran under a swap arrangement agreed to in 2004, with Baku supplying gas to the Iranian city of Astara. The two states have been developing oil and gas cooperation over the past years and they signed a memorandum of cooperation in 2018 for joint work in an oil field located in the waters of the Caspian Sea.

November 18, 2021

Saudi Arabia’s crude oil exports hit eight-month high in September

Saudi Arabia’s crude oil exports in September rose for a fifth month in a row to their highest level since January. Its crude oil exports rose to 6.516 million b/d in September, up from 6.450 million b/d in August. The world’s largest oil exporter’s crude output rose by 100,000 b/d month over month to 9.662 million b/d in September, its highest since April 2020. OPEC+ is also raising output 400,000 bpd per month, gradually unwinding record output cuts made in 2020.

November 15, 2021

Saudi Arabia, Kuwait say other OPEC+ members’ struggles won’t push them to bust quotas

Saudi Arabia and Kuwait indicated that they will not increase their crude oil productions above their quotas to make up for other OPEC members’ shortfalls or to ease the upward pressure on prices. Prince Abdulaziz said he wanted to be “very respectful” to OPEC+, while Kuwaiti counterpart Mohammed al-Fares said infringing on quotas could disrupt the coalition’s harmony and risk ending the supply pact entirely. The recent gas and electricity crunch in Europe and Asia has been pulling up crude prices with some power plants switching fuels to oil, but there is no shortage of oil in the market, the Saudi energy minister said. OPEC, Russia and nine other partners reaffirmed their plans for a small 400,000 b/d production hike for December, rejecting complaints from the US, India and Japan.

November 10, 2021

China’s Iran oil purchases rebound on lower prices, fresh quotas

China’s imports of Iranian oil have held above 500,000 b/d on average for the last three months. The Biden administration has so far chosen not to enforce sanctions against Chinese individuals and companies amid negotiations that could revive a 2015 nuclear deal that would allow Iran to sell its oil openly again. Officially, China has not imported any oil from Iran since the start of 2021, according to its customs data, as state-owned refiners remain sidelined by the US. sanctions. China’s foreign ministry is urging the United States “to lift the illegitimate unilateral sanctions as soon as possible”.

November 9, 2021

Iraq to initiate talks with Chevron to develop energy projects: oil ministry

The country’s oil ministry has said that Iraq has allowed state-run Iraqi National Oil Co. to start negotiations with Chevron to develop fields in the southern province of Dhi Qar. Development could include four exploration blocks and other potential projects such as gas development and solar power plants. The Nasiriyah fields in Dhi Qar could initially produce 600,000 b/d of crude over a seven-year period, the ministry said.

November 8, 2021

Higher energy prices lift Qatar budget surplus – finance ministry

Qatar’s government budget recorded a surplus of 0.9 billion riyals ($247 million) in the third quarter, boosting the nine-month surplus in 2021 to 4.9 billion riyals. This comes as higher energy prices increased the nation’s revenue. Expenditures reached 46.1 billion riyals in Q3, of which 16.3 billion riyals went towards major projects.

November 8, 2021

OPEC+ hikes October output by 480,000 b/d but many members underperform

OPEC and its allies boosted crude oil production by 480,000 b/d in October, according to the latest S&P Global Platts survey. Only half of the group’s members actually increased output last month though, as many coalitions are struggling to pump as many barrels as promised. Many of the members have been beset by significant disruptions due to a combination of factors ranging from damaged infrastructure, operational issues and technical problems. The monthly rise was attributed mainly to the group’s largest oil producers such as Saudi Arabia, Russia, the UAE and Kuwait as well as Kazakhstan, which completed heavy maintenance on a key field.

November 7, 2021

Qatar orders six LNG ships from Korean shipyards amid expansion plans

QatarEnergy has ordered six LNG ships from two South Korean shipyards, the first batch under a 2020 agreement, as the Gulf state seeks to meet requirements for its North Field expansion plans. Four vessels were ordered from Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering and two ships from Samsung Heavy Industries. The cost of the order and timeline of delivery has not been disclosed. Qatar’s North Field is the world’s largest offshore gas field and the expansion project will boost its LNG production capacity to 126 million mt/year by 2027 from 77 million mt/year now.

November 4, 2021

UAE targets 25% of global hydrogen fuel market by 2030

The United Arab Emirates aims to capture 25% of the global hydrogen fuel market by 2030. The country also said that it was implementing more than seven ambitious hydrogen projects, targeting main export markets including Japan, South Korea, Germany and India, in addition to other markets in Europe and East Asia.

October 25, 2021

Middle East Green Initiative to invest $10 bln, Saudi crown prince says

Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince launched a Middle East Green Initiative on Monday which he said aimed to secure 39 billion riyals ($10.4 billion) for an investment fund and clean energy project as part of efforts to reduce regional carbon emissions. The Crown Prince said that the kingdom would contribute 15% of the funds and would work with other states and development funds on funding initiatives. When this Green Initiative plan was first announced in March, the Prince said it aimed to reduce carbon emissions in the region’s hydrocarbon industry by 60% and reverse desertification in one of the world’s most water-stressed regions by planting billions of trees. Prince Mohammed bin Salman also pledged that Saudi Arabia would reach “net zero” emissions by 2060.

October 25, 2021

OIL FUTURES: Crude bounces past $86/b mark as supply outlooks hold firm

Crude oil hit $86.14/b as supply sentiment remains firm while OPEC+ holds steady on crude oil production rises. Demand recovery from impacts of COVID-19 coupled with a conservative approach from the OPEC+ alliance to raise its crude oil production has been providing support to the complex lately. Supply tightness has also been exacerbated by the inability of some OPEC+ countries to raise production quickly to match monthly increments in quotas. An analyst from ING said “Comments from the Saudi energy minister which suggest that OPEC+ will continue to take a cautious approach in increasing output is likely providing some support to the market, particularly with other members of OPEC+ echoing the Saudi view”.

October 24, 2021

Saudi Arabia wants to be top supplier of hydrogen – energy minister

Saudi Arabia’s Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman al-Saud has said that the country wants to be the biggest supplier of hydrogen. He added that the country intends to produce and export somewhere around 4 million tonnes of hydrogen by 2030. There are growing international calls for reductions in fossil-fuel investment and for the focus to shift towards renewable energy sources. Earlier this year, the chief executive of Aramco, said that the company is looking for off-take agreements for hydrogen in its key markets to expand its output and sees strong potential for growth.

October 24, 2021

QatarEnergy enters deal with ExxonMobil to explore offshore Canada’s Atlantic coast

QatarEnergy has entered an agreement with ExxonMobil Canada to explore offshore from Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada. The agreement will have QatarEnergy holding 40% and ExxonMobil Canada owning the rest. The exploration site “represents our first entry into offshore Canada in an established producing basin with the leading producer in the area,” Qatar energy minister Saad al-Kaabi said in a statement. The block covered by the agreement is approximately 450km east of the city of St. Johns, at a depth of 1,100 meters. QatarEnergy has increasingly looked abroad for upstream assets in a global diversification push.

October 23, 2021

Oil giant Saudi Arabia pledges to achieve carbon neutrality by 2060

Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman announced that Saudi Arabia aims to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2060, with more than 60 initiatives planned at an initial cost of almost $190 billion. The goal refers to emissions produced domestically and does not apply to hydrocarbons exported and combusted elsewhere. Renewables, carbon capture, utilization and storage, direct air capture and hydrogen are some of the projects that the country will develop to meet this goal. The Saudi energy minister said 2060 was the chosen year to reach net zero because most technologies needed for the energy transformation won’t be “mature” until 2040. Saudi Arabia is currently the world’s largest crude oil exporter.

October 22, 2021

Biden blames OPEC for high oil prices, sees US fuel costs easing in 2022

President Joe Biden blamed the current high oil prices on OPEC withholding supply, while ultimately dismissing the idea that he might try to persuade the producer group to increase production. Biden suggested he had few near-term options for moderating high fuel prices while Saudi Arabia did have the ability to cool off the market. “A lot of Middle Eastern folks want to talk to me,” he said. “I’m not sure I’m going to talk to them. But the point is, it’s about gas production”. He did not mention US oil production, which remains nearly 2 million b/d under its 13 million b/d peak in November 2019.

October 22, 2021

Kuwait says drilling, facilities work underway to reverse declining oil production capacity

Kuwait will be able to unlock some 500,000 b/d of potential output capacity in the next two years, the head of its state oil company said. This announcement was made seeking to allay concerns over the firm’s own admission that the ability to pump crude has declined in the past three years. Earlier this month, a report said that Kuwait Oil Co.’s maximum sustainable production capacity had fallen to 2.579 million b/d as of March 31, down 572,000 b/d from 2018. To achieve the 500,000 b/d, a drilling program of 500 wells annually, construction of two gathering facilities and water injection facilities, and other infrastructure projects are currently underway. In September, Kuwait announced plans to invest $6.1 billion on exploration over the next five years, but analysts have cast doubts on this figure due to the oil sector being hampered by political instability.  Kuwait hopes to have capacity up to 4 million b/d by 2035 – 2040. 

October 14, 2021

Russian deputy PM, Saudi energy minister discuss oil, hydrogen and nuclear energy

The Russian Deputy Prime Minister and Saudi Arabia’s Energy Minister discussed oil markets, hydrogen and nuclear energy, according to a statement on the Russian government website. The Deputy Prime Minister, Alexander Novak said the two countries are also working on a project for the full production of solar installations and power generators. Novak also met with the UAE’s Energy Minister to discuss hydrogen and bilateral cooperation, as well as the Russian-UAE conference on oil, petrochemical and gas cooperation due to take place on the sidelines of ADIPEC.

October 11, 2021

Saudi Aramco taps banks for $12-14 bln gas pipeline loan – sources

Saudi Aramco has asked banks to arrange a loan expected to be in the $12 billion to $14 billion range that it plans to offer to buyers of its gas pipeline network. Potential buyers are expected to submit bids at the end of October, said one of the sources. Sources have also previously said Aramco could raise at least $17 billion from the sale of a significant minority stake in its gas pipelines. And a previous deal, which included all of Aramco’s existing and future stabilized crude pipelines, was backed by $10.5 billion financing from a large group of banks including Citi, HSBC and JPMorgan.

October 11, 2021

Iraq’s oil sector progress, IOC deals hinge on outcome of parliamentary elections

The outcome of the October 10th parliamentary elections will influence the progress of Iraq’s oil sector and the finalization of numerous key deals with international oil companies signed during the one-and-a-half year tenure of Mustafa al-Kadhimi’s government. Oil Minister Ihsan Ismaael has managed to sign several deals with international oil, gas and power companies, but most of these agreements are not final and their implementation will depend on the next government. The most high profile deal is a $27 billion agreement with TotalEnergies that includes four projects. Help from international oil companies is needed if Iraq is to fulfill its plans to boost its oil production capacity beyond the estimated 5 million b/d.

October 11, 2021

Qatar Petroleum changes name to Qatar Energy – newspaper

Qatar Petroleum has changed its name to Qatar Energy, reported the Qatari newspaper, The Peninsula. A press conference in Doha has been planned to discuss the name change.

October 11, 2021

Saudi to supply additional crude to some Asian refiners in Nov -sources

Saudi Aramco has agreed to supply additional crude to at least three Asian buyers in November, while meeting full contractual volumes for four others. Aramco has been supplying full crude volumes to Asia despite limiting output to comply with a pact between OPEC+. Besides Saudi Arabia, Kuwait is also able to supply incremental light and heavy crude cargoes above contractual volumes in November, two other sources said.

October 11, 2021

Saudi Arabia’s biggest IPO since Aramco surges in debut

ACWA Power International raised more than $1.2 billion in the biggest Saudi listing since Aramco. The stock jumped by the 30% daily limit to 72.80 riyals and ACWA is now valued at $14.2 billion, making it one of the biggest listed companies in Riyadh. ACWA aims to play a major role in the transition to greener energy by producing renewable electricity and hydrogen, as the government has said ACWA will help develop 70% of Saudi renewable energy projects. It is also a part of a consortium developing a $5 billion plant for exporting green energy and using solar and wind powered fuel in the new city of Neom.

October 8, 2021

Iraq signs deal with consortium led by Norway’s Scatec for 525 MW solar plants

Iraq signed an agreement with a consortium led by Norway’s Scatec Solar to build two solar power plants with a total capacity of 525 MW. The other companies in the consortium are Egypt’s Orascom Construction and Iraq’s Bilal. The project is part of a plan to develop 7.5 GW of renewable power before 2023 and follows the signing of an agreement with UAE’s Masdar to develop 1 GW of renewable power from five plants in an initial phase. Iraq is under increasing pressure from the US to wean itself off electricity and gas imports from Iran, which has been subject to US sanctions since 2018, and it has been striking a number of renewable agreements to help lower its dependence on oil and gas as feedstock for power generation.

October 7, 2021

Iraq seeks 7.5 GW of renewable power as it inks 2 GW deal with UAE’s Masdar

Iraq is seeking to develop 7.5 GW of renewable power as it inks a 2 GW agreement with UAE’s clean energy firm Masdar. In the initial phase of the Masdar deal, 1 GW will be developed in Iraq and the UAE Energy Minister said the Masdar deal will be a “long-term investment”. Iraq has been striking a number of renewable agreements to help lower its dependence on oil and gas as feedstock for power generation including $27 billion deals with TotalEnergies and initial agreements with PowerChina.

October 6, 2021

Iraq in advanced talks with IOCs over boosting oil capacity to 8 mil b/d by 2027

Iraq, OPEC’s second-biggest producer, is in advanced talks with international oil companies over boosting the country’s production capacity to 8 million b/d by end of 2027. Several oil companies operate the country’s biggest oil field in the south, including BP’s Rumaila, Lukoil’s West Qurna 2 and Eni’s Zubair. But ExxonMobil has filed an arbitration case against state-owned Basra Oil Co. over its stalled attempt to sell its stake in the giant West Qurna 1 oil field.

October 4, 2021

Oman ‘almost back to normal’ as Sohar port reopens after cyclone

Oman is “almost back to normal” said Oil Minister Mohammed al-Rumhi. This is a day after Cyclone Shaheen hit the country, temporarily disrupting LNG and crude oil loadings. Oman is the Middle East’s largest crude oil producer outside of OPEC, and one of the few LNG exporters in the region along with Qatar. Sohar Port and Freezone resumed marine operations on Oct. 4 after closing as a precaution the day before. There have been no reports of infrastructural damage or injuries.

October 4, 2021

OPEC+ agrees to stick to existing oil output plan, sources say

OPEC and its allies agreed to stick to their existing agreement to add 400,000 b/d of oil to the market in November. This is despite pressure from consumers as the price of benchmark Brent crude has surged above $80. That price is more than 50% higher than at the start of the year, which has been pushed up due to supply disruptions, and surging demand amidst an economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

October 3, 2021

ADNOC Drilling jumps over 30% in debut for Abu Dhabi’s largest IPO

ADNOC Drilling shares, a unit of the Abu Dhabi oil giant ADNOC, jumped 30% as trading started on Sunday, October 3rd. The initial public offering was $1.1 billion, the largest ever on the Abu Dhabi stock market. ADNOC Drilling, whose share offering attracted more than $34 billion in demand, is expected to be among the 10 largest companies on the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange. ADNOC increased the size of the IPO to 11% of share capital because of oversubscription. It had previously targeted selling a minimum stake of 7.5%. 

October 3, 2021

Qatar orders four LNG carriers from China, its first shipyard deal with Beijing

State-owned Qatar Petroleum has ordered four new LNG carriers from Hudong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding Group Co. (Hudong), a unit of China State Shipbuilding Corp. This is its first LNG vessel deal with a shipyard from China. The cost of the order exceeds Qatari Riyals 2.8 billion ($770 million), Saad al-Kaabi, Minister of State for Energy Affairs and QP CEO, said in the statement. Qatar Petroleum signed an agreement to reserve LNG ship construction capacity in China to support its North Field, which is the world’s largest offshore gas field, located in the Persian Gulf and shared with Iran.

October 2, 2021

Reliance sets up a subsidiary in UAE for trading oil

Reliance Industries has said that it’s setup a wholly owned subsidiary in the UAE for trading in crude oil, petroleum, petrochemical products, and agricultural commodities. The new subsidiary is called Reliance Industries Ltd. It has yet to commence operations, but $1 million has been invested into the new business. Reliance Industries operates the world’s biggest refining complex at Jamnagar in western India. The company did not say why they decided to set up a new unit located in the UAE, but it is in line with it becoming more internationally focused.

September 30, 2021

Saudi Arabia may trim November crude prices for Asia

Top oil exporter Saudi Arabia may just trim November crude prices for customers in Asia even though Middle East benchmarks posted wider declines this month, industry sources said. Saudi Aramco typically sets prices based on the monthly change in benchmark Dubai’s market structure. They’re expected to deviate from this pricing formula as it already slashed October prices.

September 29, 2021

Qatar signs 15-year deal to sell China 3.5 mil mt/yr LNG

Qatar Petroleum said Sept. 29 that it had reached an agreement to supply 3.5 million mt/year of LNG to China over 15 years, starting January 2022. The long-term sale and purchase agreement is with CNOOC Gas and Power Trading & Marketing Ltd., a subsidiary of China National Offshore Oil Corp. This comes at a time when buyers are hesitant to commit to new long-term investments in LNG supply, in part due to price volatility. Qatar made its first LNG shipment to CNOOC in September 2009 and as of August 2021, Qatar has delivered 715 LNG cargoes to China.

September 29, 2021

Iraq reconfigures Gulf terminal to boost exports of Basrah Medium crude: sources

Iraq has converted nearly half of its export capacity at its southern terminal on the Gulf coast to load its Basrah Medium crude, sources at the country’s State Oil Marketing Organization and Basrah Oil Company said. This enables the country to boost shipments to nearly 1.8 million b/d of Basrah Medium from its fixed jetties at the Al-Basrah Oil Terminal. SOMO introduced the Basrah Medium grade in January to address quality issues with the country’s biggest crude stream, Basrah Light. Basrah Medium is now SOMO’s most popular export grade, especially in Asia, outpacing shipments of Basrah Light and Basrah Heavy.

September 28, 2021

Dana Gas says tribunal awards it $607.5 million in Iran deal dispute

UAE energy firm Dana Gas said on Tuesday an international arbitration tribunal had awarded it $607.5 million in a gas supply dispute with National Iranian Oil Co. The dispute concerns a 25 year gas sales and purchase contract between Dana Gas affiliate Crescent Petroleum and NIOC. Dana Gas says the gas was never delivered. The damages awarded are for the first eight and a half years of the 25 year agreement that had been due to start in 2005. A final hearing on a “much larger claim” for the remaining 16.5 years has been set for October next year in Paris with a decision on that award due in 2023, Dana Gas said in a statement.

September 28, 2021

OPEC forecasts oil demand rebound before post-2035 plateau

OPEC forecasts that oil demand will grow sharply in the next few years as economies recover from the pandemic. They also added that the world needs to keep investing in production to avert a crunch despite an energy transition. But OPEC’s view contrasts with that of the International Energy Agency, which said that investors should not fund new oil projects if the world wants to reach net zero emissions. Oil use will rise by 1.7 million barrels per day in 2023 to 101.6 million bpd, OPEC said. This is in addition to robust growth already predicted for 2021 and 2022.

September 27, 2021

Iranian condensate cargo begins discharging in Venezuela – sources

A 2.1-million barrel cargo of condensate supplied by Iranian National Oil Company to Venezuela’s PDVSA began discharging this week, according to two sources and tanker tracking data. This is the first of a swap deal between the state-run firms, who have agreed to a medium-term contract to exchange Venezuelan heavy crude for Iranian condensate. U.S. sanctioned Venezuela and Iran have since last year strengthened their cooperation. Both their state-run oil companies are barred by the U.S. Treasury Department. A second 2.1 million-barrel condensate cargo, contracted under the same swap agreement, is expected to arrive in Venezuelan waters in the coming weeks, the sources said.

September 27, 2021

APPEC: Qatar could surpass Australia in hydrogen, energy transition, says Woodside ex-CEO

Peter Coleman, former CEO of Australia’s largest oil and gas independent company, said that Qatar can utilize being a planned economy to gain the first-mover advantage over Australia in the emerging market for hydrogen and hydrogen-derived energy products. He said, “The Qataris can work on a government-to-government level to establish the infrastructure at both ends, supply and demand”. Coleman also stated that, “rather than be a competitive threat, the Qataris can be seen as the pioneers forging through, and there will be a great industry that comes from behind it”.

September 27, 2021

Bahrain abolishes NOGA, oil ministry to take over functions

Bahrain’s king issued a royal decree abolishing the National Oil and Gas Authority, with all its functions to be undertaken by the oil ministry, the state-run Bahrain News Agency said. NOGA has raised funds in the debt capital markets several times over the past few years, including a $600 million issuance of sukuk, or Islamic bonds, in April. It has $2.25 billion in outstanding conventional bonds, according to Refinitiv data.

September 27, 2021

Germany’s Uniper looks to Middle East for more hydrogen supplies

German energy company Uniper is in talks with more Middle East hydrogen producers to acquire supply for the European market. This is part of Uniper’s plan to supply customers with decarbonized hydrogen and to turn its European operations carbon neutral by 2035, company officials said. They want to use their natural gas, LNG shipping, and storage network in Europe to support its hydrogen ambitions. In July they held negotiations with Oman for an exclusive offtake agreement for green ammonia. Germany has a subsidy mechanism that could benefit Middle East sales if offering prices are competitive with other suppliers such as Australia and Chile.

September 27, 2021

ACWA to finance renewable energy projects with green bonds – CEO

ACWA Power, partly owned by Saudi Arabia’s PIF sovereign wealth fund, will look at issuing green bonds starting next year to finance some of its renewable energy projects, its chief executive said. ACWA Power already has five projects certified for green finance which together will require just under $10 billion to fund. In August, ACWA and a consortium secured financing for Sudair Solar PV, a 1.5-gigawatt plant that is the first under the Public Investment Fund’s renewables program.

September 25, 2021

Exclusive: Under U.S. sanctions, Iran and Venezuela strike oil export deal

State-run firms Petroleos de Venezuela (PDVSA) and National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) have agreed to a key contract to swap Venezuelan heavy oil for Iranian condensate that it can use to improve the quality of its tar-like crude, five people close to the deal said. Venezuela seeks to boost its flagging oil exports in the face of U.S. sanctions. This deepens the cooperation between two of Washington’s foes. PDVSA plans to mix the Iranian condensate with extra heavy oil to produce diluted crude oil, a grade demanded by Asian refiners that it has struggled to export since late 2019 when suppliers halted diluent shipments due to sanctions, three sources said.

September 20, 2021

Iran appoints Iraq energy envoy amid reduced gas, electricity exports

The Iranian oil minister has appointed a special energy envoy to help bolster Tehran’s ties with neighboring Iraq. Javad Owji has appointed Abbas Beheshti to follow up on the settlement of gas export dues and identify other common interests between the two countries around oil product trading and private sector investments in the oil industry. There will also be a follow up on data surrounding shared oil fields, which Iran shares 12 with Iraq. This all comes at a time when Iraq is being pressured by the US to wean itself off Iranian energy imports. Iraq also owes Iran billions of dollars in unpaid energy bills due to its inability to settle without the threat of US sanctions.

September 19, 2021

Kuwait starts 100,000 b/d oil gathering center amid expansion plans

State-owned Kuwait Oil Co. has started operations at a new gathering center that can handle 100,000 b/d of crude oil as the OPEC producer forges ahead with plans to expand its production capacity.  GC-31 was built by Dodsal, and it is one of three gathering centers that have been constructed, each of which will be able to produce 100,000 b/d of crude oil. It will also process 62.5 MMcf/d of associated gas and 240,000 b/d of treated water. Petrofac has also won a $1.3 billion project to construct GC-32 at Burgan, the country’s largest oil field. It is the first sour crude gathering center to be developed at Burgan and will process 120,000 b/d of crude and associated gas. Work on GC-32 was supposed to end in mid-2020.

September 19, 2021

OPEC to stick to oil production deal in October, Iraq oil minister says

OPEC and its allies will try to keep oil prices at $70 per barrel in the first quarter of 2022, Iraq’s oil minister said. He also added that the group is expected to stick to its current production accord when it meets in October “if prices remain stable”. Iraq’s total oil exports, including those of the Kurdistan region in the north of the country, should stand at an average of 3.4 million barrels per day in September.

September 19, 2021

Saudi retains top spot in oil supplies to China with volumes up 53% y/y

Saudi Arabia kept its ranking as China’s top crude supplier for a ninth straight month in August as major producers relaxed production cuts. Saudi oil arrivals surged 53% from a year earlier to 8.06 million tonnes, or 1.96 million b/d. That compares with 1.58 million b/d in July and 1.24 million b/d in August last year. OPEC and its allies decided in July to ease production cuts and increase supply by a further 2 million b/d.

September 17, 2021

Iran’s petrochemical, fuel sales boom as sanctions hit crude exports

Iranian fuel and petrochemical exports have boomed in recent years despite stringent U.S. sanctions. This leaves Iran well placed to expand sales swiftly in Asia and Europe if Washington lifts its curbs. The United States imposed sanctions in 2018 on Iran’s oil and gas industry to choke off its main source of revenue in a dispute with Tehran over its nuclear work. The sanctions crippled crude exports but not sales of fuel and petrochemicals, which are harder to trace. Iran exported petrochemicals and petroleum products worth almost $20 billion in 2020, which were its main sources of revenue and twice the value of its crude exports. If the sanctions are lifted Iran is positioned well, as Iranian gasoline exports rose 600% year over year in 2020 to 180,000 b/d.

September 16, 2021

Abu Dhabi inks agreements with BP to develop clean energy projects

Three agreements between Abu Dhabi and BP were announced on September 16th, 2021 for investments in hydrogen, sustainable aviation, and carbon capture, among other technologies.  The development will be billions of dollars in clean-energy projects located in both the UAE and the UK. The UAE has aspirational clean energy goals of its own, even as it ramps up its crude production capacity, holding the eighth largest oil reserves. The deals are the latest efforts by the hydrocarbon-rich emirate to scale up its alternative energy sector and diversify its economy by partnering with international oil companies. Officials in the emirate have outlined plans to generate half of its energy from clean and renewable sources, including nuclear power, by 2050.

September 13, 2021

OPEC now predicts 2022 return to pre-pandemic oil demand, in bullish case for output hikes

OPEC is now projecting world oil demand to exceed pre-pandemic levels in 2022, while the bloc and its allies plan to continue to gradually raise crude output. The projected forecast raised global demand growth in 2022 to 4.15 million b/d, up from last month’s 3.28 million b/d. This higher estimate is driven by a stronger than anticipated recovery in various fuels, and a steady economic outlook in all regions. The 2021 demand forecast has been kept largely unchanged and the non-OPEC supply for 2021 has been expected to increase less than predicted due to Hurricane Ida and a fire in Mexico disrupting production.

September 13, 2021

Lebanon’s Hezbollah says Iranian fuel oil to arrive Thursday

Hezbollah says that a ship carrying Iranian fuel oil has docked in Syria to help Lebanon through its financial crisis. Fuel has dried up during Lebanon’s economic crisis, leading businesses and households to rely on private generators that run on fuel oil. The vessel arrived in Syria instead of Lebanon to prevent U.S. economic sanctions, though Hezbollah’s opponents say the purchase and future purchases still risks sanctions. Three more ships carrying gasoline and fuel oil are expected in the coming days, while the United States is backing an effort to address the financial crisis by bringing in Egyptian gas via Jordan and Syria.

September 12, 2021

UAE’s Brooge starts 600,000 cu m fuel oil, crude storage facility at Fujairah

UAE based Brooge Petroleum and Gas Investment Co. has started operations at its 600,000 cu m second phase storage facility at the Port of Fujairah. This brings the storage facility to 1,000,000 cu m (6.3 million barrels) which can store fuel oil, clean products and crude. Fujairah is one of the seven emirates in the UAE federation that is located outside the key chokepoint of the Strait of Hormuz and The Port of Fujairah is the world’s third-biggest bunkering hub. It expects its oil storage capacity to triple to 12 million cu m by 2024, with Abu Dhabi National Oil Co. and Ecomar looking to expand their storage facilities and Brooge already working on a third storage facility.

September 10, 2021

UAE’s Barakah nuclear power starts second reactor, government says

The Barakah nuclear power station in the United Arab Emirates began operating its second reactor, the Abu Dhabi government media office said on Friday. Once completed Barakah, which is being built by Korea Electric Power Corp, will have four reactors with a total capacity of 5,600 megawatts, which is equivalent to about 25% of the UAE’s peak demand. This second reactor comes after the first reactor started commercial operations in April.

September 8, 2021

Aramco oil pipelines investors to sell at least $4 bln in bonds in Q4 – sources

A consortium led by EIG Global Energy Partners that took a stake in Saudi Aramco’s oil pipelines is preparing to issue at least $4 billion in the fourth quarter. This is to refinance a loan that largely funded the $12.4 million deal. The deal gave the consortium a 49% stake in a new entity, Aramco Oil Pipelines Company, and rights to 25 years of tariff payments for oil transported through Aramco’s oil pipeline network. The bonds will be refinanced across two to three deals and the pipeline investors will likely come to market with the first bonds and accelerate a previous timeline to the fourth quarter of this year. It was previously said in April 2021 that the first bond sale would likely be in the first quarter of 2022.

September 8, 2021

UAE’s Dana Gas secures U.S. agency funding for Iraqi Kurdistan project

The UAE’s Dana Gas has secured $250 million in financing from the U.S. development agency to fund the expansion of gas production at the Khor Mor plant in Iraqi Kurdistan. This is the biggest ever financing in Iraq by the U.S. development agency. Pearl Petroleum, a consortium that is co-led with UAE’s Crescent Petroleum, secured the 7-year financing from the International Development Finance Corp. Developing gas fields in Kurdistan to power local industries would cut carbon emissions as well as help save on fuel costs. Expansion of the Khor Mor plant was halted last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic and is expected to be completed in April 2023.

September 5, 2021

Saudi Arabia foils missile, drone attacks near Aramco HQ, refinery

Saudi Arabia foiled ballistic missile and booby-trapped drone attacks in the eastern province near Aramco’s headquarters and the cities of Najran and Jazan on September 4th. Yemen’s Houthis claimed responsibility for the attacks, in which ten drones and 6 ballistic missiles targeted the Aramco facilities and Jeddah, Jazan and Najran. Saudi air defenses intercepted and destroyed the missiles which led to a scattering of debris that slightly damaged 14 houses in the al-Dammam neighborhood. This is not the first time the Houthis have launched attacks against Aramco. While most have failed, the September 2019 attack on Aramco’s Abqaiq crude processing plant and Khurais oil field temporarily knocked out 5.7 million b/d and upset the markets.

September 2, 2021

Saudi Arabia’s ACWA Power launches $1 billion IPO

Saudi Arabian utility developer ACWA Power announced its intention to float on the Riyadh bourse in an initial public offering which sources have said could raise more than $1 billion. 85.3 million shares are planned to be issued, representing 11.67% of the capital after a capital increase. 11.1% of the company, or 81.2 million shares will be offered to the public and around 4.14 million shares will be allocated to certain employees of the company and its subsidiaries. About 70% of the IPO proceeds will go towards financing the company’s equity contribution to upcoming projects and the remaining 30% will be used for general corporate purposes. The IPO was originally planned for 2018 but was delayed due to problems with a power plant in Turkey.

August 25, 2021

Iraq, PowerChina ink agreement to develop up to 2 GW of solar power

Iraq and state-owned PowerChina have signed an initial agreement to develop 2 GW of solar power plants. In the first phase, PowerChina will develop 750 MW, and Iraqi officials say the agreement would help further the country’s goal of generating 20%-25% of its energy from renewables by 2030. Iraq is under increasing pressure to wean itself off Iranian electricity and gas imports which have been subject to US sanctions since 2018. Waivers have been granted to Iraq since 2018 to continue importing energy from Iran. A number of difficulties are occurring with Iraqi energy though, such as intermittent supply of gas and electricity from Iran, difficulty paying back the billions of dollars worth of dues to Tehran, and the slowness of capturing its own associated gases.

August 16, 2021

India’s Petronet aims to extend long-term LNG buy deal with Qatar

India’s top gas importer Petronet LNG hopes to extend its long-term deal to purchase LNG from Qatar beyond 2028 with India’s gas demand set to rise. Petronet’s long-term deal to buy 7.5 million tonnes per year of LNG from Qatar expires in 2028. The company’s head of finance, V.K. Mishra, said negotiations for the extension of the contract under new terms and conditions will begin in 2023.

August 16, 2021

Aramco in advanced talks on up to $25 billion Reliance deal

Saudi Aramco is in advanced talks to acquire roughly 20% stake in Reliance Industries Ltd’s oil refining and chemicals business, worth about $20 billion to $25 billion in Aramco’s shares. An agreement could be reached as soon as the coming weeks, however, Aramco and Reliance declined to comment on the matter.

August 15, 2021

Saudi Aramco joins local 1.5 GW solar project with a 30% stake

Saudi Aramco, alongside the country’s sovereign wealth fund and Riyadh-based ACWA Power, is investing in its largest solar project with a capacity of 1.5 GW. The $907 million Sudair solar PV plant is the first project under PIF’s renewable energy program that aims to support Saudi Arabia’s energy transition and contribute 70% of the country’s renewable energy under the National Renewable Energy Program. The project will be able to power 185,000 homes, while offsetting nearly 2.9 million mt/year of emissions.

August 13, 2021

Iran Oil Output Falls To 40-year Low In 2020

According to an analysis by the U.S. EIA, Iran’s crude oil production fell to its lowest in 40 years. Before the U.S. withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal and the snap-back of sanctions, Iran was pumping around 2.6 million bpd and exporting some 2.5 million bpd. Now Iran’s oil output stands at less than 2 million bpd due to the pandemic and U.S. sanctions specifically targeting Iran’s oil industry.

August 11, 2021

U.S. calls on OPEC and its allies to boost oil output

U.S. President Joe Biden’s administration urged OPEC and its allies to boost oil output to tackle rising gasoline prices that they see as a threat to the global economic recovery. The request reflects the White House’s willingness to engage major world oil producers for more supply to help industry and consumers, even as it seeks the mantle of global leadership in the fight against climate change and discourages drilling at home.

August 11, 2021

Iraq wants to boost its oil output to 8 million bpd by 2027

Iraq wants to boost its oil production to 8 million bpd by 2027 according to the country’s oil minister Ihsan Ismaael, with a current oil production capacity of around 5 million bpd. Iraq was one of the five countries that negotiated a higher baseline for its OPEC+ quota, which will rise from 4.653 million bpd through April 2022 to 4.803 million b/d in May 2022 onwards.

August 10, 2021

Baghdad Says Iran Halted Electricity Exports To Iraq

According to Iraq’s Electricity Minister Adil Kareem, quoted by Iranian Mehr News Agency, reduction in hydropower output in Iran amid a water scarcity has prompted Tehran to suspend electricity exports to neighboring Iraq, which relies on Iranian power and gas supply. Major Iraqi power plants are dependent on Iranian natural gas supply, and Iraq also imports electricity from Iran, as Baghdad’s power generation is not enough to ensure domestic supply.

August 9, 2021

Iraq, Kurdistan Region Look To Resolve Long-Standing Oil Dispute

The federal government of Iraq and the semi-autonomous region of Kurdistan pledged on Sunday to cooperate and resolve their differences in energy issues when the Iraqi Minister of Oil Ihsan Abdul Jabbar Ismaael met with Kamal Atroushi, Minister of Natural Resources of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), in Baghdad. The ministers agreed to put national interest above other considerations and said transparency was important in the energy sector across Iraq.

August 8, 2021

Saudi Arabia’s first wind farm starts power generation

Saudi Arabia’s first wind farm, with a capacity of 400 MW, has started power generation. Dumat al-Jandal, which is being developed by UAE clean energy firm Masdar and France’s EDF Renewables in the northern part of the kingdom, will power up to 70,000 Saudi households when it’s complete.

August 6, 2021

OPEC+ hikes crude output 750,000 bpd in July

OPEC+ added 750,000 bpd of crude production in July, slightly shy of what it had planned, as only eight of the coalition’s 22 producers boosted output last month despite looser quotas. The group’s compliance to its July quotas, however, fell to 106%, its lowest compliance rate since January. This was because Saudi Arabia unwound almost all of its voluntary cut, producing 9.48 million bpd, near its July quota of 9.50 million bpd and its highest level since April 2020. The OPEC+ alliance has now added 1.72 million bpd of production in the past three months as the oil demand recovery gathers pace this summer.

August 6, 2021

G7 says Iran behind tanker attack

Foreign ministers from G7 said Iran was threatening international peace and security and that all available evidence showed it was behind an attack on the Mercer Street tanker last week. In a separate statement, the U.S. military said recovered pieces of the drone were nearly identical to previously-collected samples of Iranian attack drones and that the distance to the locations of the attacks was within the range of documented Iranian one-way attack drones. Tehran has denied any involvement in the suspected drone attack in which two crew members – a Briton and a Romanian – were killed.

August 5, 2021

US gives Iraq another 120-day waiver to import Iranian power supplies

The US State Department has granted another sanctions waiver allowing Iraq to import Iranian electricity until December as it grapples with frequent power outages and lack of domestic capacity. Baghdad has sought the waivers since 2018 but has been hard-pressed to deliver on promises to curb its dependence on Iranian energy imports. A lack of infrastructure to capture flared gas from oil production has contributed to the problem. The situation has led to frequent and widespread power outages, especially during the hot summer months, which often sparks protests.

August 4, 2021

Oman confirms Asphalt Princess tanker had been hijacked in Arabian Sea

Oman officially confirmed that the Asphalt Princess tanker was involved in a hijacking in the Arabian Sea. Three maritime security forces told Reuters a day before that the Asphalt Princess tanker had been seized by suspected Iranian-backed forces, which Iran denied. 

 

August 4, 2021

FUJAIRAH DATA: Oil product stocks fall to four-month low as fuel oil exports rise

Oil product stockpiles at the UAE’s port of Fujairah fell to a four-month low, led by a decline in fuel for power generation and marine bunkers, with total inventories at 18.747 million barrels on August 2, down 10.5% from a week earlier and the lowest since March 22. Recent tanker incidents near Fujairah may lead shippers to be more cautious about traveling to the area for a few days but are unlikely to stay away for long if vessels are no longer attacked. 

 

August 4, 2021

Oman considers implementing target of zero emissions by 2050

Oman’s upstream oil and gas sector is evaluating a target of zero emissions by 2050, with interim targets set by Oman including the deployment of renewable energy and the deepening of energy efficiency actions, which would enable Oman to slow GHG emission growth and reduce them by 7% in 2030. Additionally, the country’s National Energy Strategy set a target to derive 20% of electricity from renewables by 2027, with the current majority of electricity in Oman generated by burning crude oil and natural gas. 

 

August 3, 2021

OPEC+ leaves Iran behind as it starts hiking crude oil production

Further delay in obtaining sanctions relief finds Iran facing an increasingly competitive oil market, with OPEC, Russia and several other allies planning to increase crude production by 400,000 bpd every month through the end of 2022. If Iran reaches an agreement with the U.S. to relax sanctions restricting its oil sales, it may have to bargain hard with its previous buyers or attract new customers with price discounts. Under the OPEC+ agreement, Iran is exempted from production quotas, but the country has been hard hit due to sanctions imposed by former President Donald Trump. 

 

August 3, 2021

Saudi Aramco, UAE’s ADNOC Plan New Asset Sales

The biggest state-held oil firms in the Middle East, including Saudi Aramco and the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC), consider selling more assets to investors to monetize stakes in their various downstream and upstream businesses as prices rise. Aramco has already made one major asset sale deal this year, selling a 49% stake in its pipeline business for $12.4 billion, while ADNOC is getting ready for an IPO of its drilling business and aims to attract foreign investors to it. ADNOC has already raised billions of U.S. dollars from energy asset deals, including a sale of a 49% stake in its gas pipelines in 2020 for $10 billion. 

 

August 1, 2021

Iraq’s Federal oil exports rose 0.9% in July amid higher quota

Iraq’s federal oil exports rose 0.9% in July from a month earlier to an average of 2.918 million bpd in July, up from an average of 2.892 million bdp in June, as Iraq enjoyed a higher OPEC+ quota level. Iraq struggled at the beginning of 2021 and for most of 2020 to adhere to its quota amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the oil price rout and the financial crisis gripping the country, and was one of the five countries that negotiated a higher baseline for its quota.

August 1, 2021

UK says ‘highly likely’ Iran attacked tanker off Oman

Britain believes Iran carried out an attack on an Israeli-managed petroleum product tanker off the coast of Oman on July 29 that killed a Briton and a Romanian, and said it was working with partners on a joint response. According to British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab it was highly likely that Iran attacked the tanker using one or more drones.

July 30, 2021

OPEC July oil output hits 15-month high as demand recovers

OPEC oil output rose in July to its highest since April 2020 as the group further eased production curbs under an OPEC+ pact. Saudi Arabia delivered the biggest increase in July of 460,000 bpd, as it further unwound its voluntary cut and raised output while OPEC has pumped 26.72 million bpd, up 610,000 bpd from June’s revised estimate. OPEC+ have been unwinding record output cuts agreed in April 2020, as demand and the economy recover.

July 29, 2021

International oil companies withdrawal from Iraq threatens plans for oil capacity boost

International oil companies (IOCs) that are attempting to exit their operations in Iraq will make it harder for the country to maintain its output in some fields, which will make it difficult for Iraq to achieve its target of 7 million bpd by 2025. According to Iraq’s oil minister Ihsaan Ismaael, the country’s inappropriate investment climate dissuades IOCs from staying, while IOC’s has complained about financial terms offered at the largest southern fields and the slow bureaucratic pace of approving capacity additions and infrastructure upgrades.

July 28, 2021

Saudi Arabia’s oil exports climb 147% to $16 billion in May

The value of Saudi Arabia’s oil exports in May increased 147% to just over $16 billion from a year earlier, while non-oil exports rose by 70%. China remained Saudi Arabia’s main trading partner in May, with Saudi exports there corresponding to 21.4% of total exports.

July 27, 2021

Iraq wants American firm to replace Exxon

Iraq’s Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi said that he wants another American company to replace Exxon Mobil Corp when it exits Iraq. Exxon, which in 2019 had looked poised to move ahead with a $53 billion project to boost Iraq’s oil output, has been seeking to sell its 32.7% stake in one of Iraq’s biggest oil fields, West Qurna 1. According to Kadhimi, Exxon Mobil is considering exiting Iraq for reasons that are to do with its internal management practices, decisions and not because of the particular situation in Iraq.

July 27, 2021

Most Gulf markets firm on higher oil prices

Most stock markets in the Gulf ended higher on Tuesday, following a rise in oil prices, with the Abu Dhabi index settling at a record high. According to a market analyst, the GCC markets have recovered as oil prices stabilized, following clearer expectations on global demand. Still, the spread of the delta Covid-19 variant remains an ongoing concern.

July 26, 2021

ExxonMobil seeks arbitration against Iraq’s BOC over stalled West Qurna 1 stake sale

After ExxonMobil’s stalled attempt to sell its stake in Iraq’s West Qurna 1 oil field, the U.S. oil giant has filed an arbitration case against Iraq’s state-owned Basra Oil Co. ExxonMobil, the main operator of the field, had in January entered into an agreement with third parties to sell its 32.7% share, but Iraq’s oil minister Ihsan Ismaael had said at the beginning of May that Iraq was seeking to take over the stake itself, after having previously said that it was in talks with unnamed U.S. energy companies to acquire ExxonMobil’s share.

July 26, 2021

Oil prices fall due to worries about Covid-19 variants and changes to China’s import rules

Oil prices fell on Monday due to concerns over fuel demand caused by the spread of Covid-19 variants and changes to import rules in China, which offset expectations of tight supplies through the rest of the year. Covid-19 cases continued to rise over the weekend, with record daily increases and lockdown extensions in some countries. Simultaneously, China’s crackdown on the misuse of import quotas combined with the impact of high crude prices could see China’s growth in oil imports sink to its slowest in two decades this year, despite an expected rise in refining rates in the second half.

July 26, 2021

Saudi Arabia suspends privatisation of desalination and power plant

Saudi Arabia has suspended the privatisation of the Ras Al Khair desalination and power plant, one of several state assets that the government aimed to sell to reduce pressure on capital spending and diversify revenues away from oil. The Privatization Supervisory Committee for the Environment, Water and Agriculture sectors said that the decision was made to capitalise on knowledge and capacity built in the Kingdom as a result of many years of experience in water desalination but that it will continue to engage investors in future public-private partnerships and privatisations in the water sector.

July 25, 2021

UAE’s Dana Gas to continue operating onshore Egypt assets after winning arbitration case

Dana Gas, a UAE-based energy company, said on July 25 it will continue to operate its onshore Egyptian fields after winning an arbitration case filed by IPR Wastani Petroleum. Dana Gas had wanted to sell its onshore assets in Egypt to focus on its production in Iraq’s northern Kurdistan region. For now, Dana Gas will also focus its attention on exploring Block 6 in Egypt.

July 23, 2021

Energy Industry Should Thank Saudi Arabia For Oil Price Recovery

According to Robert Yawger, executive director at Energy Futures at Mizuho securities, OPEC and the entire energy industry should thank Saudi Arabia for the way the Kingdom managed their oil production during the Covid-19 pandemic – giving up some market share and cutting more oil products than they had agreed to – while adding that the entire market would be best left in Saudi’s hands to manage. Yawger did, however, not mention the Kingdom’s role in the oil price war at the beginning of the pandemic, when Saudi Arabia and Russia deliberately increased production and exports, flooding the world with oil and crashing prices.

July 23, 2021

U.S. considers crackdown on Chinese imports of Iranian oil

The U.S. is considering cracking down on Iranian oil sales to China as it prepares for the possibility that Tehran may either not return to nuclear talks or adopt a tougher stance if they do since the incoming President-elect Ebrahim Raisi raises uncertainties about Iran’s future position regarding the talks. Chinese refiners are the biggest importers of Iranian oil and have averaged between 400,000 and 650,000 barrels per day this year on a monthly basis.

July 22, 2021

Iran opens oil terminal in Gulf of Oman to bypass Strait of Hormuz

Iran has opened its first oil terminal in the Gulf of Oman to allow the country to avoid using the Strait of Hormuz shipping route that has been a focus of regional tension for decades. According to President Hassan Rouhani, it “is a strategic move and an important step for Iran. It will secure the continuation of our oil exports.”

July 22, 2021

Saudi Aramco facing $50 million cyber extortion over leaked data

Saudi Aramco acknowledged that leaked data from the company likely came from one of its contractors. The data is now being used in a cyber-extortion attempt involving a $50 million ransom demand. The oil firm did not say which contractor found itself affected nor whether that contractor had been hacked or if the information leaked out another way.

July 19, 2021

OPEC+ agrees oil supply boost after UAE and Saudi Arabia reach compromise

OPEC+ ministers agreed on Sunday to boost oil supply from August, agreeing to new production allocations from May 2022 after Saudi Arabia and others agreed to a request from the UAE that had threatened the plan. The UAE will see its baseline production, from which cuts are being calculated, increase to 3.5 million bpd from May 2022 from today’s 3.168 million.

July 19, 2021

Saudi Arabian crude oil exports hit four-month high in May

Saudi Arabia’s crude oil exports rose in May to 5.649 million bpd, their highest level in four months. Saudi crude stocks rose 1.690 million barrels to 135.775 million barrels in May.

July 19, 2021

Oil falls 5% after OPEC+ producers agree to raise output

Oil prices fell over $3 in their largest daily decline since late March after OPEC+ overcame internal divisions and agreed to boost output, causing concern about a crude surplus as COVID-19 infections rise in many countries. OPEC+ producers have gradually eased their output curbs, which now stand at around 5.8 million bpd.

July 18, 2021

Iran set to start first oil export terminal on the Gulf of Oman

Iran is set to start loading crude oil at the Jask oil terminal on the Gulf Oman as early as July 19, adding its first export terminal outside the strategic Strait of Hormuz leading to the Persian Gulf. Iran considers the terminal important to diversify its export sources, to supply feedstock for domestic petrochemical products to be exported.

July 14, 2021

Saudi and the UAE reach compromise to unlock more oil supply

According to an OPEC+ source, Saudi Arabia and the UAE have reached a compromise over OPEC+ policy that should unlock a deal to supply more crude to a tight oil market and cool soaring prices. The source said Riyadh had agreed to Abu Dhabi’s request to have the UAE’s baseline – the level from which cuts under the OPEC+ agreement on supply curbs are calculated – set at 3.65 million bpd from April 2022, up from 3.168 million now.

July 13, 2021

UAE’s Masdar to develop 440 MW solar projects in Uzbekistan

The UAE’s clean energy firm Masdar plans to develop 440 MW of photovoltaic solar projects in Uzbekistan, where it has the country’s first 100 MW PPP solar project. Masdar has renewables projects capable of generating more than 11 GW in more than 30 countries, with a total value of $20 billion and plans to double its renewable energy capacity from the current 11 GW in two to three years through global expansion.

July 12, 2021

South Korea signs 20-year LNG deal with Qatar

South Korea’s energy ministry has signed a 20-year LNG supply agreement with Qatar for the next 20 years starting in 2025. South Korea’s state-run Korea Gas Corp will buy 2 million tonnes of LNG annually from Qatar Petroleum.

July 5, 2021

Oman state energy firm OQ may sell drilling business

Oman state energy company OQ is considering selling its drilling unit Abraj Energy Services, as the Gulf nation seeks to shore up its finances that have been hit by the coronavirus pandemic and last year’s oil price plunge. State-controlled energy companies in the Gulf have embarked on a flurry of privatisations to extract value from their assets amid an accelerating global shift away from fossil fuels.

July 5, 2021

Oman’s state energy company seeks $1.5 bln in financing

According to two sources, Energy Development Oman is in talks with banks to raise $1.5 billion in debt financing. The company is working with JPMorgan on its financing plan, and there is strong interest from lenders in the UAE to be part of the deal.

July 4, 2021

Qatar Petroleum to join France’s TotalEnergies in three South African exploration blocks

Qatar Petroleum signed an agreement with France’s TotalEnergies to acquire an interest in three South African offshore exploration blocks. QP is the world’s biggest LNG producer and has moved in the past few years to expand its overseas footprint and recently stepped up its activity to grow a gas-focused worldwide upstream portfolio.

July 4, 2021

Saudi Arabia is looking to develop its hydrogen industry

With recent investor pressure to adopt greener practices, Saudi Arabia is looking to develop its hydrogen industry, focusing on hydrogen projects relying on fossil fuels and carbon capture technology, creating so-called blue hydrogen. The country has already invested in carbon capture technology to ensure its oil production has a low carbon intensity. The same technology is used for the production of blue hydrogen.

July 3, 2021

Iraqi minister says BP considers withdrawing from Iraq, Lukoil wants to sell up

Iraqi Oil Minister Ihsan Abdul Jabbar said that BP was considering withdrawing from Iraq, and that Russia’s Lukoil had sent a formal notification saying it wanted to sell its stake in the West Qurna-2 field to Chinese companies.

July 2, 2021

OPEC+ seeks oil policy consensus as UAE demands changes

An OPEC+ deal to release more oil to the market and extend its supply management policy to the end of 2022 hinges on agreement from the UAE, which effectively blocked a deal agreed by top producers Saudi Arabia and Russia to ease oil cuts by 2 million bpd by the end of 2021 and extend the remaining cuts to December 2022 from April 2022. The UAE is arguing that the new deal needs to acknowledge that the UAE has higher production from which cuts are being made.

June 30, 2021

QP to spend $200 million on emissions reduction technology for LNG expansion project

Qatar Petroleum is set to spend $200 million on emissions reduction technology for its North Field LNG expansion project. According to the company’s bond prospectus, the new technology is expected to achieve approximately a 30% reduction in GHG emissions compared to similar existing LNG facilities.

June 30, 2021

Saudi regulator approves ACWA Power IPO

Saudi Arabia’s Capital Market Authority has approved an initial public offering of an 11.1% stake in ACWA Power, a listing that has been expected for years. ACWA Power leads a consortium that will build and operate renewable power-based utilities at Saudi Arabia’s flagship Red Sea tourism project.

June 30, 2021

UAE’s Nawah and French Framatome sign maintenance agreement

The United Arab Emirates’ based Nawah Energy Company responsible for operating and maintaining UAE’s Barakah nuclear power plants and French company Framatome have signed a maintenance and engineering services agreement. Framatome will provide needed maintenance, engineering, training, technical and operational support and fuel services to the Barakah plants.

June 29, 2021

Basrah Gas signs loan agreement with IFC for project to limit gas flaring

Iraq’s Basrah Gas Co. signed an agreement with the International Finance Corporation for a loan to fund a project to limit the flaring of natural gas, which is a source of nearly $2.5 billion in lost revenue for the government, according to the World Bank.

June 29, 2021

Iraq to receive $360 mil World Bank loan to help expand gas flaring reduction from south

Iraq ‘s Basrah Gas Co. will receive $360 million from the World’s Bank’s private sector financing arm to help the world’s second worst gas flaring nation in 2020 to reduce gas flaring from its southern oil fields. The International Finance Corp. and BGC signed the 5-year loan agreement in order to boost the latter’s current capacity to treat and process associated gas by 40%, or 400 MMcf/d.

June 29, 2021

Iraq’s Minister of Electricity resigns

Iraq’s Minister of Electricity, Majed Mahdi Hantoosh, submitted his resignation to Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi, following an escalation of protests over the repeated power outages in the country. The resignation comes two days after the leader of the Sadrist movement, Muqtada Al-Sadr, called for Hantoosh to be sacked.

June 22, 2021

Iraq is in talks with Saudi and UAE firms to deliver clean energy

According to Iraq’s oil minister Ihsan Abdul Jabbar, the country is in talks with Masdar to implement solar energy projects targeting an electricity capacity of up to 2 gigawatts. The Minister added that there are also discussions with Saudi ACWA Power to implement renewable energy projects, expecting to sign contracts for renewable energy until 2025, targeting the production of between 10 and 12 gigawatts, which represents about 25% of Iraq’s electricity needs.

June 21, 2021

Iran stores more oil on tankers as it prepares for an eventual restart

Iran has been moving oil into place to prepare for an eventual restart, given the U.S. lifting sanctions if a nuclear deal is reached. According to energy consultancy and monitoring firms, the country could quickly export millions of oil barrels, as the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) is expected to export from onshore and offshore storage that contains as much as 200 million barrels.

June 21, 2021

Gulf states will take at least 10 years to end oil dependence

Gulf states will remain heavily dependent on hydrocarbon production for at least the next ten years as efforts to diversify economies have made limited progress since the 2014-2015 oil price shock. Oil and gas account for over 20% of gross domestic product and at least 50% of state revenues in most Gulf countries, and according to the rating agency Moody’s, reliance on the energy sector will be the “key credit constraint” for the countries forming the Gulf Cooperation Council.

June 18, 2021

Chevron, consortium of Total and Qatar Petroleum win Suriname oil bids

Suriname’s state oil company Staatsolie said that Chevron Corp and a consortium of France’s TotalEnergies SE and Qatar Petroleum submitted the most favorable bids to develop offshore oil blocks, after it invited companies to bid for exploration rights in eight offshore shallow water blocks in November. The winning companies are now in the process of negotiating production-sharing contracts.

June 17, 2021

Iraq to boost production capacity of West Qurna 1 by 40% in five years

Iraq’s state-run Basrah Oil Co. signed a contract with ExxonMobil and Schlumberger to boost West Qurna 1 field’s production capacity by 200,000 b/d by drilling 96 wells, as the country plans to boost the production capacity of the field by 40% to more than 700,000 b/d over the next five years. Iraq is in talks with ExxonMobil to take over its 32.7% stake in West Qurna 1, which currently produces 380,000 b/d.

June 17, 2021

Oman’s OQ aims to replace 40% of its 3 GW of power consumption with renewables

Salim al-Huthali, CEO of Alternative Energy at Oman’s OQ, told S&P Global Platts that the sultanate-owned company is looking to replace 40% of its 3 GW power consumption with renewable energy projects, in order to free up gas volumes to be deployed elsewhere. OQ is also developing green hydrogen, green ammonia, green methanol and green steel projects, as well as blue hydrogen and ammonia.

June 17, 2021

Saudi Arabia’s April crude exports slip to 10-month low

Official data from Riyadh showed that Saudi Arabia’s April crude oil exports fell to their lowest level since June 2020, with crude exports from the world’s top exporter slipping to 5.408 million bpd from 5.427 million bpd in March, while crude output edged lower to 8.134 million bpd in April from 8.138 million bpd the previous month.

June 16, 2021

SABIC integration into Saudi Aramco will not entail asset disposals

Saudi Basic Industries Corporation’s CEO Yousef Al-Benyan said the company’s integration into Saudi Aramco will not entail asset disposals, as the chemicals producer is looking to expand its production volumes. In addition to investments in Saudi Arabia, SABIC is looking to expand its footprint in the United States, Asia, and Africa, Benyan said, as the company expects to update its long-term strategy by Q3.

June 15, 2021

ADNOC awards $510 mil contract to Saipem to expand Shah sour gas plant capacity

Abu Dhabi National Oil Co. has awarded a $510 million contract to Italy’s Saipem to expand the capacity of Shah sour gas plant. The contract will increase the capacity of the Shah gas plant by 13%, as the UAE’s biggest energy producer seeks gas self-sufficiency.

June 15, 2021

Oil steadies after hitting 2-year high

After oil prices hitting their highest levels in more than two years, they ended mostly unchanged on Monday. Growing U.S. crude production and Britain’s delayed COVID-19 reopening damped expectations for fuel demand growth and tighter supplies. OPEC+ has been restraining production to support prices after the pandemic significantly reduced demand in 2020.

June 15, 2021

Saudi Arabia To Boost Oil Production To 10 Million Bpd

Goldman Sachs expects Saudi Arabia to hike its crude oil production to 10 million barrels per day (bpd) by the end of 2021, up by 1.5 million bpd from May. The forecasted increase stems from the global demand rebound and the strong domestic recovery in oil demand, which also prompted the investment bank to raise the expected percentage growth of the Saudi economy by 4.5 percent in 2021, compared to an earlier forecast of 2.5 percent growth.

June 14, 2021

Energy majors bid for Qatar LNG project despite lower returns

Six top western energy firms – Exxon Mobil, Royal Dutch Shell, TotalEnergies, ConocoPhillips, Chevron and Italy’s Eni – are vying to partner in the vast expansion of Qatar’s LNG output. This comes despite Qatar Petroleum offering international bidders returns of around 8% to 10% on their investment, down from around 15% to 20% returns Exxon, Total, Shell and Conoco have seen from earlier LNG facilities.

 

June 11, 2021

Oil prices hits multi-year high

Oil prices reached multi-year highs on Friday, settling at $72.69 a barrel, rising 17 cents after reaching their highest since May 2019. According to the IEA, OPEC+ “needs to open the taps to keep the world oil market adequately supplied,” amidst an improved outlook for worldwide demand as rising COVID-19 vaccination rates help lift pandemic curbs.

June 11, 2021

Saudi Arabia to supply full July crude oil volumes to buyers in Asia

Saudi Arabia will supply full volumes of July-loading crude to its Asian customers, five sources with knowledge of the matter told Reuters. OPEC+ agreed in April to gradually ease oil output cuts from May to July and confirmed the decision at a meeting on June 1.

June 11, 2021

Saudi Aramco raises $6 billion with debut sukuk

Saudi Aramco raised $6 billion as it returned to the international debt markets with its first U.S. dollar-denominated sukuk sale. The debt issuance will help fund a $75 billion dividend commitment that will mostly go to the government. Aramco last year maintained its promised $75 billion annual dividend to shareholders despite lower oil prices. 

June 10, 2021

OPEC Raised Oil Production By 400,000 Bpd In May

OPEC’s crude oil production rose by 390,000 bpd to 25.46 million bpd in May 2021. According to OPEC’s secondary sources, the largest monthly increases in oil production came from Saudi Arabia, which boosted its production by 345,000 bpd to 8.466 million bpd. However, Saudi Arabia self-reported higher production and told OPEC that its crude oil production rose by 410,000 bdp from April to an average of 8.544 million bpd in May. 

June 8, 2021

Oman LNG signs deal with Shell to ship Middle East’s first carbon-neutral LNG

Oman LNG announced a deal signed with Shell to deliver the country’s first carbon-neutral LNG cargo. According to the company, “the cargo is the first carbon-neutral LNG from the Middle East using nature-based carbon credits to offset full lifecycle CO2 emissions generated across the LNG value chain.” Oman LNG did not provide details on which company is responsible for offsetting the carbon by planting trees or where this project would be located.

June 8, 2021

Saudi Arabia and Russia will continue to invest in oil and gas

The leaders of the OPEC+ group, Saudi Arabia and Russia, said they will continue to invest in oil and gas because the world will still need those resources for decades, following the IEA’s report suggesting no new investment in oil and gas would be required if the world is to reach net-zero emissions by 2050.

June 2, 2021

Aramco is planning a bond sale to fund $75bn dividend

Saudi Aramco has picked around 15 banks to manage a bond sale worth $5 billion to fund its $75 billion dividend commitment. Although Aramco’s profits soared in the first quarter, free cash flow remained too low to fully cover its dividend for the period.

June 1, 2021

Saudi Arabia Launches First Large Scale Desalination Plant To Be 100% Powered By Renewable Energy

The Red Sea Development Company launched the first desalination plant powered entirely by renewable energy in Saudi Arabia, with a planned capacity to produce two million bottles of water a year. It will be the largest of its kind in the world.

May 20, 2021

Oil falls for a third day on possible return of Iranian supply

Oil prices fell for a third day in a row after the Iranian President Hassan Rouhani claimed that sanctions on oil, shipping and petrochemicals had been dealt with in talks. The demand outlook in Asia and the call from IEA to stop oil, gas, and coal financing contributed to the drop in oil prices.

May 18, 2021

InterContinental Energy launches a 25-GW project in Oman

InterContinental Energy has launched a 25-GW project in Oman, focusing on green ammonia exports. Once at full capacity, reached around 2038, the project will produce 1.75 million mt/year of hydrogen, which could make 9.9 million mt/year of green ammonia.

May 18, 2021

Saudi Aramco to co-lead report on cyber resilience in oil industry

Together with the World Economic Forum and Siemens Energy, Saudi Aramco is co-leading a report on cyber resilience in the oil and gas industry. The report is a collaboration involving 40 major industry players aiming to shape the oil and gas industry’s future cyber security.

May 17, 2021

UAE expects 20% of power generation to come from clean energy in three years

Amid plans to diversify its energy mix and lower its carbon footprint, the UAE will have 11 out of 50 GW from renewable and nuclear energy sources in three years. UAE’s energy ministry’s assistant undersecretary for electricity, water and future energy affairs Yousif al-Ali states that working on efficiency is vital for carbon reduction.

May 17, 2021

Oman’s OQ to develop green fuels project with consortium

A consortium including Oman’s state-owned oil firm OQ aims to develop the so-called fuel of the future – green hydrogen. Besides increased access to clean energy, the initiative will transform Oman’s skills base and technical expertise in renewable energy.

May 16, 2021

Iran’s Petropars to develop Farzad B gas field

Iran has signed a $1.78 billion contract with Petropars Group to develop the country’s Farzad B gas field. The development comes after failure of talks with Indian companies.

May 10, 2021

Iraq formally asks to buy $350 mln Exxon oilfield share

Iraq has formally asked to buy ExxonMobil’s $350 million share in one of Iraq’s biggest oil fields, West Qurna 1. The oil and finance ministries will now follow up with procedures to secure finance and plans on increasing light production.

May 6, 2021

UAE’s Masdar to develop 65 MW solar PV plant in Greece

UAE’s clean energy firm Masdar aims to make its first investment in Greece and double its renewable energy capacity of 11 GW in two to three years. The PV plant is expected to be completed in 2023 and help Greece reach its 35% renewable energy goal by 2030.

May 6, 2021

India places orders to lift regular supplies from Saudi Aramco in June

After India reduced oil purchases from Saudi Aramco in May, India placed regular supply orders from Aramco in June, mainly drawn by lower prices. India has urged refiners to diversify its crude sources to cut its dependence on oil from the Middle East, mainly Saudi Arabia.

May 6, 2021

Siemens energy and UAE’s Masdar aims to build pilot hydrogen plant by 2022

Siemens Energy and UAE based Masdar aims to build a demonstrator hydrogen plant with a focus on showcasing sustainable aviation fuel. The hydrogen production will be powered by a PV and if successful be scaled-up commercially in the future.

May 4, 2021

Saudi Aramco beats quarterly profit forecast

Saudi Aramco’s net income rose by 30% to $21.7 billion for Q1 2021 from $16.7 billion a year earlier and maintained its dividend payout. Aramco prefers to keep dividends stable and more shares could be sold in the upcoming years.

April 29, 2021

Saudi Arabia’s SABIC expands petrochemical portfolio

SABIC is to take over the sales and marketing of about 5.4 million mt/year of Saudi Aramco’s chemicals and polymer products, ending up with about 900,000 mt/y of new products available for sale. Saudi Aramco has since 2020 worked to integrate SABIC into its downstream business.

April 29, 2021

French energy group Total not considering return to Iran

According to Chief Financial Officer Jean-Pierre Sbrarie, the French energy group Total is not considering a return to Iran for now due to uncertainty regarding sanctions on the country.

April 28, 2021

Saudi Arabia in talks to sell 1% of Aramco

In televised remarks, Saudi Arabia’s crown prince said the kingdom was in discussions to sell 1% of Saudi Aramco to a leading energy company. The crown prince announced in 2016 to list a 5% stake in Aramco, but due to lack of interest beyond the Gulf, ended up selling a 1.7% stake in 2019.

April 28, 2021

Oman’s National Oil Firm To Sell Off Assets To Fund $7.9 Billion In Spending

Oman’s national oil firm OQ aims to sell assets and tap the international debt market to fund its $US7.9 billion expenditures over the next years. Due to the pandemic, OQ suffered losses in 2020 and does not expect to receive funding from the state anymore.

April 28, 2021

Major Chinese investors in talks to take Aramco stake

Major Chinese investors, among them Sovereign wealth fund China Investment Corporation, are in talks to buy a stake in Saudi Aramco. In a televised remark, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman said Saudi Arabia was in discussions to sell 1% of Aramco to a leading global energy company and could sell further shares within the next year or two.

April 26, 2021

Saudi Arabia solar target raised

With seven solar projects planned, Saudi Arabia is closer to developing 3.3GW of solar capacity up from its current 300 MW. S&P Global Platts Analytics forecast that 7.7GW will be built by 2026.

April 26, 2021

UAE’s Mubadala in talks to buy $1.1 bln stake in Israeli gas field

Abu Dhabi’s Mubadala Petroleum is in talks to buy a $1.1 billion stake in the Israeli gas field in the eastern Mediterranean natural gas field, Tamar. If the deal is finalised, it would be among the most significant developments since Israel and the United Arab Emirates agreed to normalise ties last year.

April 25, 2021

Qatar Petroleum plans debut dollar public bond sale

Qatar Petroleum (QP) plans its first-ever U.S. dollar-denominated public international bond sale, tapping into debt markets with lingering low oil prices. QP did not respond to comment, but sources claim the deal will likely raise billions of dollars.

April 24, 2021

Saudi Arabia could save over $200 Billion from energy reforms plan

According to Saudi Arabia’s finance minister, the kingdom could save over $200 billion over the next decade by replacing liquid fuel used for domestic consumption with gas and renewable energy sources.

April 22, 2021

Saudi Aramco to refinance $10 billion revolving loans

According to two banking sources, Saudi Aramco is expected to make its third major foray into the loan market by refinancing a $10 billion debt facility. In addition, Aramco is arranging a $10.5 billion loan for investors who buy a stake in its oil pipeline business.

April 21, 2021

Kuwait’s Equate Petrochemical sells $700 million in 7-year bonds

After receiving over $3.6 billion in orders for debt sale, Kuwait’s Equate Petrochemical Company sold $700 million in seven-year bonds. The bonds were launched at 140 basis over U.S. Treasuries, smaller than the initial 170 basis points.

April 20, 2021

China’s Crude Oil imports From Saudi Arabia Up 8.8% y/y In March

Due to a high demand and delayed shipments, China’s crude oil imports from Saudi Arabia rose 8.8% in March compared to a year earlier, retaining its position as China’s top crude supplier for a seventh consecutive month. Shipments from UAE rose with 86% and Oman rose with 60%, on a yearly basis.

April 20, 2021

Abu Dhabi’s TAQA sells $1.5 billion in bonds

Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (TAQA) sold $1.5 billion in dual tranche bonds comprising seven-year tranche and 30-year Formosa notes.

April 15, 2021

Iraq In Talks With U.S. Firms Over Buying Of Exxon Shares In West Qurna 1 Oilfield

Iraq affirmed in a statement that the country is in talks with U.S. oil companies over the possibility of acquiring ExxonMobil’s shares in the southern West Qurna 1 oilfield. No further details, including the names of the companies involved in the potential acquisition, were revealed.

April 10, 2021

Aramco Agrees $12.4 Billion Deal To Sell Stake In Pipelines

Saudi oil producer Aramco has finalised the selling of 49% of stakes in its pipelines to a consortium led by U.S.-based EIG Global Energy Partners. The $12.4 billion deal is the company’s largest since its $29.4 billion initial public offering in 2019. Aramco will retain a 51% stake in the new company, as well as operational control of the pipeline, while assuming operational risk and capital expense risk in their entirety.

April 9, 2021

Iran Could Soon Officially Return 2 Million Bpd of Oil To Global Markets

Iran started negotiations with the five powers that, along the U.S., signed the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action in 2015. The talks were held in Vienna and Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani said they were a success and that they opened a new chapter in efforts to save the so-called Iran nuclear deal. If an agreement is reached on Iran’ nuclear plans thanks to the negotiations, around 2 million bpd of Iranian crude could be added to OPEC’s total.

April 8, 2021

Oman’s State-Owned Company Considers IPO

To reduce its budget deficit, Oman’ government is considering selling a stake in fully state-owned energy company OQ, formulating an IPO, or ditching some of the company’s subsidiaries. OQ is a global integrated energy group that posted total revenues of nearly $20 billion in 2019. Its consolidated assets at the end of 2019 were almost $30 billion.

April 8, 2021

Saudi Arabia signs agreements for seven new solar projects

Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman stated that Saudi Arabia has signed power purchase agreements with seven new solar projects that will provide electricity to more than 600,000 households. The plan is to produce half the kingdom’s electricity with gas and half with renewables by 2030, the Crown Prince said, also thanks to the newly announced Sakaka solar and Dumat al-Jandal wind projects.

April 8, 2021

Bahrain Due To Start Drilling Wells In New Shale Oilfield At End 2022

Bahrain’s Oil Minister Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Khalifa declared in a statement dated March 2021 that drillings for the first offshore production wells in Bahrain’s Khaleej al-Bahrain field are expected to start at the end of 2022. The discovery of the field was announced by the country in 2018, its largest oil and gas find since 1932.

April 6, 2021

Indian refiners deepen cuts to Saudi oil purchases in May

Indian state refiners will buy 36% less oil from Saudi Arabia in May than normal in a sign of escalating tensions with Riyadh. State-run refiners have placed orders to buy 9.5 million barrels of Saudi oil in May, compared with the previously planned 10.8 million barrels. The tensions stem from the Saudi and other oil producers’ cuts driving crude prices up, as India is recovering from the pandemic.

April 6, 2021

UAE’s First Nuclear Power Plant Begins Commercial Operations

The United Arab Emirates’ leaders announced on Twitter that Barakah nuclear power plant, the country’s first nuclear power station, started commercial operations. Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan said it was a historic milestone for the country.

April 5, 2021

Easing OPEC+ output cuts may unshackle Saudi-Kuwaiti Neutral Zone oil production

The reduction of OPEC+ quotas in May will probably have consequences on the Saudi-Kuwaiti shared Neutral Zone oil production, as it is ready to provide a significant source of the two countries’ additional allowed output. Starting from May, Saudi Arabia’s cap will rise by 376,000 b/d, while Kuwait will see its quota increase 96,000 b/d.

April 5, 2021

Oil Down 5% as OPEC+ and Iran boost supply

Oil prices fell down to 3$ per barrel, as Iran and OPEC+ are both boosting supply. OPEC+ has agreed over monthly increments in supply of oil from May to July.

April 1, 2021

U.S. Energy Secretary calls Saudi Energy Minister: Reiterates importance of cooperation

U.S. Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said on Twitter that she held a phone call with Saudi energy minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman, to reiterate the importance of international cooperation in the energy field.

March 31, 2021

OPEC+ lowered oil demand growth prospects cause concerns

OPEC+ lowered its oil demand growth prospects for this year by 300,000 barrels per day (bpd), causing concerns over the market’s recovery, which were the root of a fall in oil prices.

March 30, 2021

Saudi Arabia announces 1.3$ trillion private sector push led by Aramco and SABIC

Saudi Arabia’s crown prince Mohammed bin Salman has announced that oil firm Aramco and petrochemical firm SABIC will lead investments of 5 trillion riyals ($1.3 trillion) by the local private sector by 2030, under the new Shareek programme aimed at economic diversification in the country.

March 29, 2021

Iran signs agreement with Total for four energy projects

Iraq’s oil minister Ihsan Abul Jabbar said the country signed an agreement with French firm Total over collaboration in four projects involving natural gas, solar energy and seawater reprocessing. Total will design a multi-billion dollar investment for the four projects which will be submitted to the country’s cabinet for approval.

March 27, 2021

Iran seeks to boost oil exports to China with bilateral agreement

According to Iran semi-official news agency Tansim, Iran and China signed a sweeping 25-year trade and security cooperation pact. The agreement signed by the two foreign ministers  provides for China’s assistance and investment in Tehran’s energy sector, including fossil fuels, clean energy and nuclear, in exchange for greater access to Iranian oil.

March 26, 2021

Yemen’s Houthis Attack Facilities of Saudi Arabia’s Aramco

Houthi rebels’ forces have claimed several attacks on Saudi Aramco: a total of 12 drones and eight ballistic missiles hit installations in Ras Tanura, Rabigh, Yanbu and Jazan as well as a military base in Dammam near the company’s headquarters. Aramco issued no immediate comment.

March 25, 2021

Saudi storage tank catches fire near Yemeni border

A missile strike on a Saudi Aramco site near Yemen set a storage tank on fire, the latest in a series of attacks lobbed at Saudi Arabia this month by Yemen’s Houthi group. The Saudi Press Agency condemned the attack for its impact on the kingdom and beyond, threatening the stability of global energy supplies.

March 25, 2021

Suez Canal closure will significantly delay oil trade

Approximately 40 oil and LNG tankers are held up by the blockage of the Suez Canal, including vessels from Saudi Arabia and UAE. Reopening could take days or even weeks, while a detour around the Horn of Africa would take about two weeks.

March 23, 2021

OPEC+ wil reach oil inventory goal later this year

OPEC+ will reach 2019-levels of global oil inventories later this year. The Asia head of Vitol, the world’s largest independent oil trader, stated that demand is recovering in China, and the U.S. has lagged in production growth.

March 21, 2021

Aramco profit falls 44% in 2020; maintains $75 billion dividend

Though it maintained a $75 billion dollar dividend payout, CEO Amin Nasser of Saudi Aramco reported a 44% slump in full-year 2020 results and called it one of the most “challenging years” in recent history. Net income fell from $88.19 billion in 2019 to $49 billion in 2020.

March 21, 2021

Saudi Aramco will prioritize energy supply to China for 50 years

Saudi Aramco’s CEO said at the China Development Forum that the oil giant will ensure that Chinese energy security is its highest priority for the next 50 years. It has held firm onto its status as China’s top supplier of oil so far this year.

 

March 21, 2021

Saudi Public Investment Fund hires senior Goldman Sachs banker

Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund hired a senior Goldman Sachs banker to work on investments. Bloomberg reported the move, though neither PIF nor the alleged banker responded to requests for comments.

March 17, 2021

OPEC supply growth will be outpaced by rise in oil demand

According to the International Energy Agency, OPEC will have to pump oil at near-maximum capacity in the coming years due to rising demand for oil and lackluster upstream investment. OPEC will need to boost crude procession by more than 20% once oil demand rebounds, and the market will be more vulnerable to supply squeezes and disruptions.

 

March 16, 2021

International Renewable Energy Agency claims oil demand may have peaked in 2019

The director general of International Renewable Energy Agency said that global oil demand may have peaked in 2019, with natural gas following suit around 2025. IRENA’s prediction echoes BP’s projection last year that the pandemic may mark a permanent departure from the demand level of about 100 million barrels per day.

March 16, 2021

Saudi Arabia aims for 1 million barrel per day reduction in domestic oil consumption

Saudi Arabia’s Energy Minister stated the country’s intention to repurpose domestic consumption of liquid hydrocarbons by 1 million barrels per day. At the Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue, he discussed the launching of a sustainability program to explore further opportunities for innovation and collaboration.

March 14, 2021

Iraq says Kurdistan has not yet delivered crude barrels to Baghdad, continuing budget stalemate

Iraq continues to wait for barrels of crude from the Kurdistan Regional Government, continuing a budget stalemate regarding crude production and federal revenue. Baghdad has often blamed the KRG for non-compliance with OPEC+ cuts.

March 10, 2021

Iraqi oil production, output rises, breaching OPEC+ quota

Iraq’s oil production in February rose 1.6% from January in a breach of OPEC+’s quota. Both federal and Kurdish production and exports rose, continuing its pattern of failing to comply with OPEC+ agreements.

March 9, 2021

Abu Dhabi seeks new carbon capture and hydrogen partnerships

As oil’s recovery has resparked conversations about climate change mitigation, Abu Dhabi National Oil Company is exploring partnerships on carbon capture and storage technology. It recently partnered with France’s oil giant Total, and is openly exploring hydrogen’s potential as “close to zero-carbon fuel.”

March 8, 2021

Qatar exports condensate to UAE, a first since end of blockade

In the first commercial energy trade since the end of the Gulf blockade, Qatar Petroleum shipped 712,000 barrels of condensate to UAE.

March 8, 2021

Saudi Arabia leads OPEC+ push to 4-month low crude output

With OPEC+ group quota compliance at 113.5%, the coalition has successfully driven output to a four-month low. The crude output for February is estimated to be 37.83 million b/d, the lowest OPEC+ has seen since October. Saudi Arabia’s voluntary additional cuts have played a crucial role in the coalition’s balancing act. OPEC+ is likely to carry on cautiously with supply throughout April, with COVID-19 clouding the prospects for a full market recovery. 

 

Subscribe to Receive Latest Updates from GIF.