ExxonMobil Buys Into Brazil

The U.S. company prior to the auction. Exxon Mobil has vastly expanded its presence in Brazil by winning 10 blocks in the country’s 14th round of bidding for oil exploration and production rights. Previously the company was among the few oil majors without a presence in the exploration of the recently discovered large offshore fields in Brazil. Exxon Mobil took six blocks in consortia with state-controlled oil giant Petrobras in the promising offshore Campos basin. The auction was Brazil’s 14th round for blocks outside of the coveted pre-salt area and should gauge appetite for the country’s second and third pre-salt rounds.


More Of The National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska To Be Opened Up

25/10/17 • •

The U.S. Interior Department will hold a lease sale for land in a federal reserve in northern Alaska to oil and gas drillers. The sale, to be held in December, will involve 900 tracts in part of the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska. The U.S. Geological Survey said in 2010 that the NPR-A holds about 896 million barrels of undiscovered oil. A further 200 million barrels has been discovered in areas that have been explored. The reserve also contains large amounts of natural gas. Environmentalists, however, have been critical of drilling in the Alaskan wilderness.


More Of The Gulf Of Mexico To Be Opened Up, Largest Lease Sale Ever

24/10/17 • •

U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke has announced that the Department is proposing the largest oil and gas lease sale ever held in the U.S. – 76,967,935 acres in federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico, offshore Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida. It is scheduled for March 2018 and includes all available unleased areas on the Gulf’s Outer Continental Shelf, surpassing last year’s region-wide lease sale by about one million acres. The resources projected to be developed range from 0.21 to 1.12 billion barrels of oil and from 0.55 to 4.42 trillion cubic feet of gas.


Pipeline To Mexico’s West Coast To Export U.S. Gas?

20/10/17 • •

America’s drillers are looking for a cheaper and quicker route to Asian markets than the Panama Canal. And this is where Mexico comes in… Aldo Flores, Mexico’s deputy energy secretary has said that the government is in talks with shale drillers in West Texas about a potential pipeline that would send their gas straight to Mexico’s west coast, where it could then be liquefied and shipped overseas. While Mexico doesn’t have a concrete plan yet, there’s “a lot of interest,” indicated Flores, “It makes total sense for West Texas gas producers.”


Will Nigeria Partner With Russia To Develop Its Oil and Gas?

19/10/17 • •

The Nigerian Senate has begun talks with Russian oil companies to develop Nigeria’s oil and gas sector in partnership. The Chairman of the Senate Committee on Oil and Gas, Bassey Akpan, said it was time Nigeria sought support to further develop the sector. Akpan was part of President of the Senate, Dr Bukola Saraki’s delegation to the 137th Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) Assembly in Russia, who met with the oil firms. “We came here as part of the delegation of the Senate to consult with the Russians as regards development of Nigerian oil and gas.”


Iranian Oil Minister: Let American oil firms into Iran

17/10/17 • •

Iran’s oil minister, Bijan Zanganeh, has said that President Trump should allow American oil firms to do business in the Islamic Republic: “If they want to, we are ready to negotiate American companies about development of oil and gas resources,” adding “We have not closed doors” to American companies, reported Iran’s state-run IRNA news agency. President Trump has refused to re-certify Iran’s compliance with the nuclear deal with world powers, and criticized Europeans for their participation in Iran’s energy projects. French oil giant Total SA has entered the Iranian market following the deal.


Japan: $10 Billion Plan For Asian LNG, Good For U.S. Shale

16/10/17 • •

The Japanese government is to unveil a $10 billion public-private initiative to tap increasing demand for LNG infrastructure, such as offloading terminals and power plants, as the fuel is increasingly adopted throughout Asia. The effort is also designed to strengthen Japan-U.S. ties. An agreement to expand American shale gas exports to Asia is expected at the coming U.S. – Japan economic dialogue meeting in Washington, and the Japanese LNG infrastructure initiative is likely to be part of achieving that goal. Japan and India will move together to make LNG supply contracts more flexible.


Shell Buys Electric Charging Company NewMotion

13/10/17 • •

Shell has made a vote of confidence in electric cars by buying electric charging company NewMotion, a company that manages 30,000 residential and business charging stations, and offers access to 50,000 more. Shell’s investment aligns with the evolving strategies of the major oil companies in order to keep up in an all-electric future. Shell currently invests about $200 million in renewables annually but it plans to increase this to $1 billion by 2020. The company also has plans to introduce fast-charging points and install charging stations at retail locations in Norway, Britain, the Philippines and the Netherlands.


No More Shale Oil Financing Coming From BNP Paribas

11/10/17 • •

Hydraulic fracturing – or fracking – has been at the center of controversies about contaminating water sources and causing earthquakes. Now France’s biggest bank will no longer do business with companies whose main business stems from oil and gas obtained from shale, covering those companies that are involved in activities ranging from exploration to marketing and trading. This policy also includes no more financing for projects in the oil sands or Arctic. “We’re a long-standing partner to the energy sector and we’re determined to support the transition to a more sustainable world,” said Paribas’ CEO Jean-Laurent Bonnafe.


Saudi Aramco Taps Into India’s Opportunities

11/10/17 • •

India is particularly important for Aramco, which is looking for refinery stakes in major oil-consuming economies to lock in customers ahead of its Initial Public Offering next year. Aramco’s talks with Indian state-run refiners are not limited to locking in sale of crude but also encompasses increased LPG supplies and a foothold in petrochemicals and fuel retail businesses. India has already surpassed Japan as the world’s third largest oil consumer and is expected to overtake China. The country’s oil consumption growth is projected to be the fastest among all major economies over the next two decades.


Vitol: Shallow Market With Moments At $60 And In $40s

10/10/17 • •

According to Ian Taylor, the head of oil trader Vitol, U.S. oil output could have a spike in 2018 before growth flattens for a number of years. Vitol expects U.S. output to climb by 0.5-0.6 million barrels per day next year but the increase would cause cost inflation and make some production loss-making. The anticipated slowdown in U.S. output combined with robust growth in global demand for oil should push prices above the current range of $50-60 per barrel, Taylor said. Vitol has sold most of its oil in storage as it believes the market is tightening.


Next Generation Technology To Double Oil And Gas Reserves By 2050

09/10/17 • •

Next-generation technology will connect workers, suppliers, customers and assets through a reimagined business model. By leveraging Internet of Things enabled devices, the oil industry could turn insight into action. By using connected instruments from wellheads or pipelines to an integrated data repository, data sources will have increased insight into production. A cloud-based solution that aligns with talent as well as procurement provides integrated support to the supplier network, creating increased efficiency and cost savings. By optimization oil companies will have more time and resources to invest in technology to help increase oil reserves.