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Equinor wins seven exploration blocks offshore Argentina

Equinor adds seven offshore exploration blocks to its portfolio, after presenting winning bids in the 1st Offshore Licensing Round in Argentina. The bid round was arranged in Buenos Aires on 16 April. Equinor submitted the winning bids for five blocks as operator. Equinor also participated in winning bids for one block to be operated by YPF and one block to be operated by Total. “We are very pleased to succeed in this competitive licensing round and to have added significant prospective acreage to our exploration portfolio. These awards fit with ...

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Which Company Could Be The Next Permian Basin Acquisition Target?

Following the news that Chevron had agreed to pay a nearly 40% premium to acquire Anadarko Petroleum, investors quickly bid up the shares of other potential acquisition targets. As I argued in the previous article, I believe the Permian was the key to the Anadarko acquisition, but there are plenty of other targets in the region. There are also several companies with the capability of making acquisitions. In recent years, the few mergers and acquisitions in the oil and gas industry have been largely focused on the Permian Basin. The ...

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Asia naphtha at five-month high on crude oil rally; demand steady

Asia naphtha prices touched a fresh five-month high, riding on the coattails of stronger crude oil futures, amid a steady stream of demand that is envisaged to keep the market afloat. At early hours session on Wednesday, open-spec naphtha prices stood at $587.50/tonne CFR (cost and freight) Japan basis, rising by $6.00/tonne from the previous week’s close. This brought levels to their highest since early-November 2018, according to ICIS data. ICE Brent June crude oil futures rose to $71.99/bbl at early hours session, buoyed by an unexpected drawdown in US ...

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Oil settles lower as U.S. inventories disappoint market

Crude prices declined slightly on Wednesday as U.S. government data showed inventories drew down less than an industry report had suggested on Tuesday. Brent crude rallied to its highest level this year early in the session, bolstered by an unexpected drop in U.S. crude inventories reported by trade group the American Petroleum Institute late on Tuesday. However, official data from the Energy Information Administration on Wednesday showed a 1.4 million-barrel crude drawdown, about half the API’s reported decline. “The rally overnight was predicated on a 3 million-barrel-per-day draw in crude ...

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Oil hits 2019 high above $72 on China growth, lower U.S. inventories

Brent oil hit a 2019 high above $72 a barrel on Wednesday, propelled by steady economic growth in China and a fall in U.S. crude stocks which defied expectations and signalled firm demand, while global supply remained tight. International benchmark Brent crude futures were up 34 cents, or 0.47 percent, at $72.06 by 1130 GMT, having hit an intraday peak of $72.27. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $64.38 per barrel, up 33 cents or 0.52 percent and just shy of a 2019 high of $64.79 hit ...

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First Chinese deepwater rig in South China Sea aims to supply LNG to Greater Bay Area

A controversial offshore drilling platform has started deepwater operations in the South China Sea, which officials said would supply liquefied natural gas to the “Greater Bay Area” in the future. It is the first Chinese-built deepwater rig, and its first deep-sea well was completed in eastern waters of the South China Sea in recent days, according to a statement by its operator, state-run China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC). The well is 4,660 metres deep, with a true vertical depth – or the distance in a straight line from the ...

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Atlantic shippers see fertile US East Coast gasoline markets

RBOB in New York Harbor ceded support this week and nearly flipped to a discount to the front-month futures contract in late April barge and pipeline cash trading as shippers from Ireland, Turkey and other atypical arbitrage players tried to capture US value, sources said. The BW Thames delivered 418,000 barrels of gasoline blendstock and alkyate Sunday at Perth Amboy, New Jersey, from an unspecified Irish port, with Trafigura as the shipper and consignee, according to US Customs data compiled by S&P Global Platts Analytics and made public. Ireland has ...

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In windy Greek seas, Equinor looks for floating offshore projects

Norway’s energy giant Equinor sees good potential for building floating offshore wind parks in Greece as long as the country adopts a regulatory framework for the technology. Equinor, one of the world’s largest oil and gas producers, operates Hywind park in Scotland, the world’s first floating offshore wind park, and is struggling to find new renewables projects to invest in. In comments approved for release on Monday, Equinor’s leading business developer said the company had been exploring opportunities in Greece. “I think the physical potential is there. There are areas ...

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Nigeria says debt repayments to foreign partners spurring rise in oil output

Nigeria’s efforts to reduce debt owed to its foreign oil partners is progressing well and is helping the country bolster exploration and production, state-owned Nigerian National Petroleum Corp. said. “So far, we have repaid over $1.5 billion out of the $5.1 billion cash call arrears to date,” NNPC group managing director Maikanti Baru said in a statement. “This has not only restored the confidence of international oil companies and our joint venture partners, but has also led to improved reserves growth and crude oil production.” The Nigerian government, through the ...

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Oil prices rise for a second day on China demand, U.S. stockpile drop

Oil prices rose for a second day on Wednesday on signs of strong demand from refineries in China, the world’s second-largest crude user, amid tightening supply as producers curtail output and as oil inventories in the United States fell unexpectedly. International benchmark Brent crude oil futures rose 29 cents, or 0.4 percent, to $72.01 a barrel by 0657 GMT. Brent gained as much 0.5 percent to 72.10 a barrel, the highest since Nov. 8 and the highest this year. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $64.49 per ...

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Expect crude prices to stabilise around $66/barrel this year, says Wood Mackenzie

The champion in the commodities sector continues to be the crude oil following yet another week of gains. Gavin Thompson, head of Asia Pacific research at Wood Mackenzie and Vandana Hari, founder of Vanda Insights, shared their views and outlook on the commodities. “We think that the growth in crude prices over the last few months – as always – is a combination of market fundamentals and some of the geopolitical factors impacting supply, demand and price. We have seen particularly Gulf States looking to rein in some of that ...

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Deepwater’s Latin America comeback

Deepwater is making a comeback. Latin America has been at the centre of the revival, boasting 40% of the world’s deepwater reserves and some of the strongest pre-FID project economics. Since 2015, Brazil and Guyana have been the focal point of activity in the region. As the site of some of the most exciting discoveries over the last few years, the Guyana basin is firmly established as one of the world’s exploration hotspots. And by 2025, Brazil will produce a third of global deepwater volumes. Eager to profit from the ...

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Upstart Russian oil firm, with Goldman Sachs backing, bucks industry blues

In the frozen taiga of eastern Siberia, where bears roam in spring after waking from hibernation, an independent Russian oil company is bucking the domestic industry trend by rapidly ramping up its output and expanding operations. Irkutsk Oil Company, known by the Russian acronym INK, has increased its crude production levels 30-fold over the past decade and has negotiated access to a pipeline network that allows it reach the Asian market. The company told Reuters it is planning investments worth $3-$4 billion (£2.29-£3.06 billion) over the next three years, including ...

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OPEC: Summer oil market outlook

The performance of product markets typically follows seasonal patterns, with refining margins recovering during the driving season in the Northern Hemisphere. Last summer, refinery margins across the globe saw some support, but exhibited only a mixed performance year-on-year. US refinery margins showed solid gains in the summer months of 2018 compared with the previous year, averaging $5.63 higher. This was mainly attributed to robust diesel demand, as well as strong gasoline exports and operational adjustments that contributed to higher margins. US diesel inventories reached record lows during the summer and ...

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Oil’s Facing Odds of Demand Worsening Before Getting Better

Oil’s march back toward a four-year high is now facing some roadblocks in the form of demand in Asia, though the path may clear to allow further gains later this year. While the current rally in global benchmark prices to over $71 a barrel will put pressure on government finances in Asia’s import-dependent nations, the level of fiscal stress typically doesn’t determine their crude purchases. Instead, the volume of shipments is influenced by the state of demand for fuel from industries and consumers in the world’s biggest oil-consuming region. In ...

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