Africa

Nigerian Crude Exports to Hit 17-Month High in August

23 Jun 2017   Nigeria

Nigerian crude exports will top 2 million barrels per day in August, reaching a 17-month high, according to new data compiled by Reuters on Thursday. Attacks by militants in the Niger Delta had crippled production in 2016, but the African nation has been rebuilding output steadily through 2017. Drops in output last year were so bad that OPEC exempted Abuja from the bloc’s November deal to cut production by 1.2 million barrels per day. The new rise in exports can partially be attributed to delayed shipments from July, Reuters said. An estimated 2.02 million bpd of Nigerian crude will leave ports on 67 tankers in August, along with another 97,000 bpd of condensates. The Forcados crude grade began loading again earlier this month, when Royal Dutch Shell lifted a force majeure on facilities related to the grade. A total of 10.3 million barrels of Forcados crude will be shipped […]

Once Again, Tensions Are Rising In Nigeria’s Oil Sector

23 Jun 2017   Nigeria

On 2nd May 2017, Nigeria’s House of Representatives rejected a motion requesting that the House compel international oil companies (IOCs) to relocate their headquarters to the Niger Delta. The initiative initially emerged in March 2017, when then-acting President Yemi Osinbajo disclosed that the government was considering the move as part of a wider effort to restore peace to the oil-rich region, which has suffered from decades of ethnic and political unrest. Despite over half a century of oil production in the Niger Delta – which holds 95 percent of the country’s oil reserves – Nigeria’s key oil-producing region has remained subject to extensive corruption and severe underinvestment. The Niger Delta region consists of nine states: Edo, Delta, Bayelsa, Rivers, Akwa Ibom, Cross River, Ondo, Abia and Imo, but the majority of oil production is focused in Bayelsa, Rivers and Delta states. Due to endemic government corruption, and economic mismanagement, […]

Nigeria’s cut exemption at risk from oil revival

23 Jun 2017   Nigeria

Upward production trend could be maintained Producer faces joining OPEC pact as output recovers August exports seen surging to 18-month high Security situation fragile despite fall in attacks Nigerian oil output has recovered to its highest level in more than a year as militant attacks have declined substantially, along with the return of key export grade Forcados. Including crude and condensate, output from OPEC’s biggest African producer plummeted to near 30-year lows of around 1.2 million b/d in 2016, from 2.2 million b/d previously, as attacks on oil facilities in the Niger Delta rose at an alarming pace due to resurgent militancy. But Nigerian crude oil production in May jumped to 1.73 million b/d, up 80,000 b/d from April, its highest level since March 2016, according to the most recent S&P Global Platts OPEC survey. Since then, the Forcados restart has boosted flows and production is expected to increase […]

China Aims For Market Share In African Refining Sector

23 Jun 2017   Africa, China

On 22 March 2017, Sinopec agreed a deal to buy out Chevron’s downstream businesses in South Africa and Botswana, in China’s first major investment into the downstream oil industry in Africa. Although China already has an extensive footprint in Africa, the majority of these operations have been confined to the upstream sector – in oil and gas exploration. China has been steadily expanding its upstream operations outside China since the late 1990’s, through its three main state-controlled oil companies : CNPC, Sinopec and CNOOC, in an attempt to meet the country’s growing oil demand. Over the past several decades, China’s oil demand has risen drastically, driven by continued economic growth, an expanding middle class and a growing demand for consumer goods. China is now the world’s second-largest oil consumer, but due to a steady drop in domestic production – thanks to high production costs, a deterioration in mature oilfields, […]

Libya reviews oil production stimulus with Norway’s Statoil

21 Jun 2017   Libya

After resolving issues with German energy company Wintershall, Libya’s state oil company said it reviewed raising production during talks with Norway’s Statoil. The Libyan National Oil Co. signed an agreement last week with Wintershall that outlines a resumption of oil production from some of its license areas on an interim basis. NOC Chairman Mustafa Sanalla said the agreement gives Wintershall enough of a production share to cover its costs and ends a costly shutdown. In a Tuesday statement , the NOC said Sanalla met in Tripoli with Fadel Hareeb, a regional manager for Norwegian energy company Statoil. The NOC said its chairman aims to attend a workshop in Norway in September on ways […]

Libya Oil Output Hits 885,000 Bpd

20 Jun 2017   Libya

Libya is producing 885,000 barrels of crude oil daily after last week it reached an agreement with German Wintershall that will see the latter restart production at fields with a combined output of 160,000 bpd, a source from the country’s oil industry told Reuters. Since the announcement of the agreement, total Libyan output has jumped by 50,000 bpd. The North African country, which has been exempted from the OPEC production cut deal, now aims to raise production to 1 million bpd by the end of next month. This plan, and the fact that it is not as far-fetched as it may have seemed a few months ago amid clashes between armed groups at some of the main oil export points in the Oil Crescent, is bound to weigh on oil prices. Last month, it was Libya whose increase in oil production drove an overall rise in OPEC output, which […]

OPEC Deal In Jeopardy As Libyan Oil Output Nears 1 Million Bpd

19 Jun 2017   Libya, OPEC

Libya—whose production has been hampered by civil unrest, political divides, and oil export terminals blockades over the past few years—is now targeting to further increase its oil output. Its most immediate goal is to reach 1 million bpd of production by the end of July, which would further complicate OPEC’s desperate efforts to reduce global inventories and prop up oil prices. And its ambitions seem plausible. Just last month, when OPEC was discussing rolling over the output reduction deal, production-cut-exempt Libya hit its highest daily production level since 2014. Earlier this week, OPEC reported that total cartel production in May was actually higher than in April, with Libya the biggest single contributor to that increase. Analysts warn, however, that Libya’s output increase is not a for-sure thing. Production could sharply drop again, given the political rivalry between factions and the fragile security situation in country. Both scenarios—that Libya could […]

Nigeria: Militants Give Northerners October 1 to Quit Niger Delta

17 Jun 2017   Nigeria

A coalition of Niger Delta militant groups rose from a meeting in Port Harcourt, Rivers State yesterday ordering all northerners to quit the oil-rich region. The militants threatened to attack all oil wells owned by northerners in Niger Delta before October 1, 2017. The groups, under the aegis of the Coalition of Niger Delta Agitators, berated the Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo, Inspector General of Police, Department of State Services and the Army for not arresting those who issued an ultimatum to Igbo to leave the north. This development has stoked the tension that is threatening to tear the nation apart. The government which has initiated a peace process may have to increase its parleys with stakeholders to avert the threats to the Nigerian union. At the joint meeting between the Coalition of Niger Delta Agitators and youth leaders across the region to review […]

Libya sees oil production gains ahead – UPI.com

15 Jun 2017   Libya

An agreement with German energy company Wintershall means Libya has a better chance of meeting oil production goals, a national oil company said.  The Libyan National Oil Co. said it signed an agreement with Wintershall that outlines a resumption of oil production from some of its license areas on an interim basis. NOC Chairman Mustafa Sanalla said the agreement gives Wintershall enough of a production share to cover its costs and ends a costly shutdown.  “I hope we can now get on with the business of meeting our oil production targets without interruptions,” Sanalla said in a statement.

Libya’s NOC, Wintershall Agree To Resume 160,000 Bpd Output

15 Jun 2017   Libya

Libya’s National Oil Corporation (NOC) said on Tuesday that it had reached an interim deal with Germany’s Wintershall to immediately resume production in concession areas and related fields, which would unblock 160,000 bpd worth of production that has been shut-in for most of the past two years over a dispute between the companies. “This shutdown was enormously costly to Libya. I hope we can now get on with the business of meeting our oil production targets without interruptions,” NOC chairman Mustafa Sanalla said in the statement. Last month, Sanalla said that a commercial dispute between Libya and Wintershall had shut in more than 160,000 bpd of output, costing the country nearly US$250 million monthly. “ We would be producing almost 1 million bpd if it were not for Wintershall’s refusal to implement terms it agreed to in 2010,” NOC’s chairman noted in a press release back then. According to […]

Qatar Spat Spills Over To Libya’s Oil, Rekindles Political Divides

15 Jun 2017   Libya, Qatar

Just as Libya’s National Oil Corporation (NOC) is targeting to raise crude oil output to 1 million bpd by the end of July, the rivaling factions in the east and west of the country have entered into a fresh dispute over Libya’s crude oil sales after several Arab states cut ties with Qatar last week. In the east, the military commander is supported by Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and Egypt—three of the Arab states that severed ties with Qatar, accusing it of sponsoring terrorism and destabilizing the region. According to Bloomberg, the chairman of the eastern NOC in Libya, Nagi al-Maghrabi, has accused Qatar of using its 8.5-percent stake in commodity trader Glencore to control the Swiss trader’s sales of Libyan crude oil. Authorities in eastern Libya have threatened to block Glencore operations, which could potentially reduce (again) Libya’s output and threaten its tentative recovery. Earlier […]

Nigeria: Oil Output Hits Over 2.0m BPD As Shell Lifts Force Majeure On Forcados

13 Jun 2017   Nigeria

Shell Petroleum Development Company Limited has officially lifted force majeure on exports of Nigeria’s Forcados crude oil, thus increasing the nation’s oil output by additional 200,000 barrels per day. Force majeure is a legal declaration, meaning that the operator cannot fulfil a contract due to circumstances outside its control in order escape any liability. Consequently, the nation’s total production increased from two million bpd to about 2.2. million bpd, the highest in 16 months. Investigations showed that the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC has started monitoring developments in the nation in order to see the possibility of including Nigeria in its oil output cut before the end of 2017. Nigeria and Libya were excluded from the cut in May when the organisation met in Vienna, Austria to adopt an action towards achieving stability in the volatile market. At the end of the meeting, OPEC had indicated in […]

Nigeria To Return 20% Of OPEC Cuts To The Market

12 Jun 2017   Nigeria

Shell lifts force majeure on Forcados oil in Nigeria Royal Dutch Shell (ticker: RDSA) lifted force majeure on exports of Nigeria’s Forcados oil grade, returning about 250 MBOPD to world markets, according to shipment data obtained by Bloomberg . Europe’s largest oil company placed the crude grade under force majeure – meaning the company could miss contractual obligations due to circumstances outside of its control – more than a year ago after repeated attacks on infrastructure by the Niger Delta Avengers (NDA). The NDA militia attacked a number of oil and gas pipelines in Nigeria in an attempt to undermine the presidential administration. The attacks dropped the country’s oil output by 1 MMBOPD to just 0.8 MMBOPD in June of last year. Ready to put about 20 percent of the OPEC cut production back into global oil supply The persistent attacks on the country’s oil and gas industry were […]

Libya’s Largest Oil Field Resumes Production

10 Jun 2017   Libya

Libya’s largest oil field, El Sharara, has resumed production after workers had shuttered the 270,000-bpd field on Wednesday, protesting over the lack of medical treatment for a co-worker who had died in an accident in a swimming pool at the field. According to a statement by Libya’s National Oil Corporation (NOC), Sharara resumed production which is expected to return to its usual output within three days. The workers’ protest shuttered Sharara production on Wednesday, and before the strike, Libya was producing 827,000 bpd, the highest level since October 2014. The resumption of Sharara production followed an emergency meeting on Thursday between NOC’s board of directors and the company operating Sharara, Akakus Oil Operations Company, in which NOC chairman Mustafa Sanalla ordered the company to verify the ambulance services conditions and upgrade the medical services for employees. At that meeting, Sanalla said that he sympathized with the workers, but “the […]

Nigerian crude oil exports threaten market balance

9 Jun 2017   Nigeria, Oil Supply

The resumption of operations at a crude oil export terminal in Nigeria could lead to stronger output from the OPEC member, industry analysts say. File photo by Pavel Shlykov/Shutterstock June 7 (UPI) — Oil export operations in Nigeria are back in service following repairs, a division of Royal Dutch Shell said, adding to lingering supply-side concerns. A spokesperson for the Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Ltd said the company lifted force majeure, a contractual condition related to circumstances beyond the control of the parties involved, for exports from the Forcados terminal in Nigeria following repairs to an export artery. The spokesperson told UPI in response to emailed questions there were “three sabotage leaks” on the pipeline that were repaired with the help from federal authorities and the governments from the oil-rich Niger Delta states. Nigeria is a member of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, but is exempt […]

Nigeria: Shell Reopens Forcados Terminal for Crude Export

9 Jun 2017   Nigeria

The Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Ltd (SPDC) operator of the Shell/NNPC Joint Venture on Tuesday lifted the 17 months force majeure placed on Forcados Export Terminal following the completion of repairs of the leaks on the Trans Forcados Pipeline (TFP) that has affected crude receipts into Forcados Terminal. The spokesperson of Shell Nigeria, Bamidele Odugbesan who confirmed the development to LEADERSHIP in a telephone chat said the force majeure was lifted effective 16.00hour (4.00pm local time) on Tuesday, June 6, 2017. He commended the government and securities agencies for their supports in ensuring the repairs of the pipelines stressing that the reopening of the crude export terminal will further improve the prospect of meeting the 2.2 million barrel per day (bpd) export target of the government. According to Bloomberg’s loading program, Nigeria’s crude shipment this month is expected to average about 250,000 bpd, adding that the extra […]

Nigeria: Militants Threaten to Resume Bombing of Oil Facilities in Delta

9 Jun 2017   Nigeria

Warri — A militant group, New Delta Avengers, yesterday vowed to resume disruption of oil exploration activities in Delta State. The militants declared “Operation Cripple Oil and Gas Production’ saying they would use any means available to achieve their aim. Spokesman of the group, Cpl Oleum Bellum, said they were putting the Federal Government and oil companies – local and multinationals – operating in the state on notice that effective from midnight June 30, 2017 there should be no more oil and gas operations in Delta. They warned that those who try their resolve would be made a scape goat.A statement issued yesterday by members of the group who claimed to be ex-militants reads: “From the oil producing parts of Delta State, this morning, June the 6th 2017, converge in Delta State, we have agreed to resume attacks on oil facilities, resurrect the spirit of insurgency and to make […]

Nigeria’s Oil Theft Epidemic

7 Jun 2017   Nigeria

Although crude oil theft has long been the subject of intense media attention in Nigeria, the downstream theft of hydrocarbons has remained under the radar. Despite this, downstream hydrocarbon theft is big business in Nigeria, Africa’s largest oil producer. In 2015, the petroleum sector accounted for approximately 51 percent of the federal government’s income and more than 90 percent of export earnings. According U.S. Department of Commerce data published in February 2017, it also accounted for between 10-12 percent of Nigeria’s GDP. As global oil prices rose above $100 a barrel in the early 2000s, the theft of oil became a very lucrative business. Furthermore, due to a conspicuous lack of youth employment in the region, many of the Niger Delta indigenes (particularly young men) have turned to the illicit hydrocarbon trade (i.e. small-scale tapping of crude oil, petroleum theft / smuggling and artisanal refining) as a source of […]

Nigeria’s Forcados Oil Comes Back in Fresh Blow to OPEC Curbs

7 Jun 2017   Nigeria

Nigerian stream back after 15-month halt caused by sabotage Extra barrels equate to about a fifth of OPEC supply curbs Royal Dutch Shell Plc lifted restrictions on exports of a key Nigerian crude oil, 472 days after imposing them following militant attacks. The extra flows alone amount to about 20 percent of the supply OPEC has pledged to cut from world markets. Europe’s biggest oil company ended a force majeure of Forcados crude oil shipments at 4 p.m. on Tuesday, a spokesman said. The measure, which allows companies to miss contractual obligations, was imposed on Feb. 21 last year. Shipments this month will average about 250,000 barrels a day, according to a loading program obtained by Bloomberg. Graphic: Tracking OPEC’s Production Cuts Nigeria is adding barrels to the market just as other members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries are trying to remove them in a bid to […]

Oil Bears Can’t Count on Libya as Expat Exodus Hinders Recovery

5 Jun 2017   Libya

Output won’t rise much above 1 million barrels a day: WoodMac OMV says security must improve before it can send expats back The rapid increase in Libya’s oil production is heading toward a hard ceiling. Crude output in the politically fragmented country has more than doubled in the past year to exceed 800,000 barrels a day, according to the state-run National Oil Corp., as fighting and labor unrest at ports and fields have subsided. But with foreign staff of international companies staying away, analysts from Energy Aspects Ltd. to Wood Mackenzie Ltd. say Libya’s ability to pump more oil will soon reach a limit — and won’t be enough to upset an oversupplied market. “You’ve got a cumulative buildup of technical issues, shortages of equipment, and increasingly reports of damage to facilities,” Richard Mallinson of London-based Energy Aspects said by phone. The North African country will struggle to push […]

Libya’s Biggest Oil Field Boosts Production, Raising the Country’s Output

1 Jun 2017   Libya

Sharara field production said to rise 25,000 barrels a day North African nation output at highest since October 2014 Libya’s biggest oil field boosted production, allowing the OPEC nation to pump crude at the highest level since October 2014. Crude from Sharara field rose by 25,000 barrels a day to 250,000 barrels, according to a person with direct knowledge of the matter who asked not to be identified because they aren’t authorized to speak to the media. Libya’s output rose to 827,000 barrels a day after the increase in output from Sharara, Mustafa Sanalla, head of the state-run National Oil Corp., said in a text message. The revival in Libyan crude production comes after the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and allied suppliers agreed on May 25 to extend a deal to cut production to battle a global oversupply until the end of March. The recent increase in Libyan […]

Nigeria Suspends Port Harcourt Refinery Concession On Transparency Grounds

31 May 2017   Nigeria

The Nigerian Senate approved on a motion to suspend a concession agreement for the Port Harcourt refinery with a subsidiary of Eni on Tuesday because the deal allegedly lacked transparency. The agreement would have allowed the Italian company’s local unit to repair and operate the 150,000-barrel-per-day facility. Eni had begun negotiations to form a partnership with the Nigerian oil firm Oando for the project, which would have allowed Lagos to reduce its dependency on imported refined oil. The Senate will now investigate the terms of the contract through a special ad hoc committee. Eni did not respond to a request for comment by Reuters. The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) had been accepting bids for the upgrade of three refineries—Port Harcourt, Warri, and Kaduna—until February 2nd. General Electric had also expressed its interest in being a part of the government’s rehabilitation initiative, which will save Lagos from spending millions […]

OPEC Insiders Reel After Key Minister Is Fired During Their Meeting

29 May 2017   Algeria

Algerian oil minister learns of dismissal from news report Boutarfa was architect of OPEC, non-OPEC production cut deal As OPEC ministers gathered in Vienna Thursday to agree a nine-month extension of their oil-supply pact, the man credited with bringing about the landmark deal learned from a news broadcast that he had been fired. The story broke as Algerian Energy Minister Noureddine Boutarfa attended a closed session with counterparts early Thursday afternoon. First came an unconfirmed report from an Algerian TV station, according to delegates who were present. More than an hour later, the nation’s official APS news agency confirmed it. Noureddine Boutarfa Photographer: Akos Stiller/Bloomberg It should have been a day of triumph for the man whose dogged diplomacy helped seal the historic alliance between producers of more than half the world’s oil, but the decision appears to have been far removed from events unfolding in Vienna. A day […]

Nigeria Secures Second Exclusion From Opec Output Freeze

29 May 2017   Nigeria

Nigeria again got members of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its other non-producers allies led by the Russian Federation, to exempt it from limiting the volume of oil it can produce from its oil fields within the extended production freeze agreement they reached at their second meeting in Austria, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, has disclosed. This is just as the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) applauded the passage of the Petroleum Industry Governance Bill (PIGB) by the Senate, and thus asked members of the House of Representatives to find similar courage employed by the senators, to accelerate the passage of its own version of the bill. Kachikwu, stated that the country and Libya, were exempted from the output freeze despite speculations they would be made to participate in the extended agreement. He however noted the country was […]

Libyan oil production has potential to cross 1 million barrels per day

11 May 2017   Libya

Libya has the technical potential to produce as much as 1.2 million barrels of oil per day, though commercial and security issues interfere, an oil leader said. Mustafa Sanalla, the chairman of the Libyan National Oil Corp. said the current crude oil production rate of 800,000 barrels per day is the best output since 2014. Libya is exempt from an agreement coordinated by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries to balance the market through managed production declines and the chairman said national security issues and contractual disputes with European partners were impeding further growth. “There are no technical reasons for the loss of production,” he said in a statement . “We are able produce an average of 1.1 million […]

Libya’s Oil Output Tops 800,000 Bpd For The First Time Since 2014

11 May 2017   Libya

Libya’s crude oil production has exceeded 800,000 bpd for the first time since 2014, and could average up to 1.2 million bpd for the rest of this year if oil flows freely, National Oil Corporation (NOC) chairman Mustafa Sanalla said on Wednesday in a statement that could fuel more fears of rising global supply. Just yesterday, reports suggested that Libya’s output had reached 780,000 bpd . Furthermore, a commercial dispute between Libya and Germany’s Wintershall had shut in more than 160,000 bpd of output, costing the country nearly US$250 million monthly, Sanalla said. “ We would be producing almost 1 million bpd if it were not for Wintershall’s refusal to implement terms it agreed to in 2010, ” NOC’s chairman noted. According to a Sanalla statement sent to The Wall Street Journal, the dispute between Wintershall and NOC is over liabilities that Wintershall owes to Libya dating back to […]

Libya Adds to OPEC’s Burden as Output Reaches Highest Since 2014

10 May 2017   Libya

Output at about 780,000 barrels a day on Sharara field boost Global producers signal extension in cuts amid oil price slump Libya is pumping the most oil since October 2014 as the OPEC member restores output amid progress in mending the nation’s political divisions. The increase adds pressure on the world’s biggest producers who just signaled they may extend production cuts amid a slump in oil. The North African country’s production has reached about 780,000 barrels a day, according to a person familiar with the situation who asked not to be identified for lack of authorization to speak to the media. Libya was producing about 700,000 barrels a day at the end of April, Jadalla Alaokali, a board member at state producer the National Oil Corp., said then. A revival in Libyan output adds to the challenge that the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and other major producers face […]

Libya Adds to OPEC’s Burden as Output Reaches Highest Since 2014

9 May 2017   Libya

Output at about 780,000 barrels a day on Sharara field boost Global producers signal extension in cuts amid oil price slump Libya is pumping the most oil since October 2014 as the OPEC member restores output amid progress in mending the nation’s political divisions. The increase adds pressure on the world’s biggest producers who just signaled they may extend production cuts amid a slump in oil. The North African country’s production has reached about 780,000 barrels a day, according to a person familiar with the situation who asked not to be identified for lack of authorization to speak to the media. Libya was producing about 700,000 barrels a day at the end of April, Jadalla Alaokali, a board member at state producer the National Oil Corp., said then. A revival in Libyan output adds to the challenge that the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and other major producers face […]

Libya Adds to OPEC’s Burden as Output Reaches Highest Since 2014

9 May 2017   Libya

Output at about 780,000 barrels a day on Sharara field boost Global producers signal extension in cuts amid oil price slump Libya is pumping the most oil since October 2014 as the OPEC member restores output amid progress in mending the nation’s political divisions. The increase adds pressure on the world’s biggest producers who just signaled they may extend production cuts amid a slump in oil. The North African country’s production has reached about 780,000 barrels a day, according to a person familiar with the situation who asked not to be identified for lack of authorization to speak to the media. Libya was producing about 700,000 barrels a day at the end of April, Jadalla Alaokali, a board member at state producer the National Oil Corp., said then. A revival in Libyan output adds to the challenge that the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and other major producers face […]

Nigeria: No Pipeline Vandalism Recorded in Three Months – Nigerian Govt

6 May 2017   Nigeria

The Nigerian government, Wednesday, said it has witnessed no pipeline vandalism arising from militant activities in the Niger Delta in the past three months. The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachikwu, made this known at the ongoing Oil Technology Conference 2017 holding in Houston, Texas, United States. A statement by the Director of Press in the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, Idang Alibi, stated that the near zero rupturing of pipelines in the oil rich region was mainly due to the consultations and ongoing discussions with Niger Delta stakeholders. According to the statement, pursuing peace, security and stability in the Niger Delta was an integral aspect of the implementation of the ministry’s target for the year. Mr. Kachikwu had announced in 2016 that the government was working hard to record no vandalism of oil pipelines in 2017. He also explained that there were efforts to substantially reduce youth […]

Stability In Libya To Start An Oil Race

5 May 2017   Libya

Libya’s ongoing civil war, which has resulted in a hothouse environment for extremists, Da’esh supporters and regional coalitions, could be heading to a slowdown in activity. Arab media sources claim that the two main adversaries, Libyan general Khalifa Haftar, currently ruling the east of the country via the Libyan national army (LNA), and UN-backed Fayez Al Serraj, Head of the Presidential Council, have reached an initial agreement to cooperate. During a meeting in Abu Dhabi, both parties seem to have agreed to form communication channels between the PC and the Operation Dignity (which was described by Haftar as the Libyan national army). At the same time, Al Serraj en Haftar has agreed that the general will be nominated for president of Libya in March 2018. Such an agreement would be a major success, not only for the two Libyan factions but especially for the main power brokers, Egypt and […]

Oil Politics Driving Libya Closer To Failure

3 May 2017   Libya

A rift has opened between Libya’s U.N.-backed government and its powerful National Oil Corporation (NOC), threatening the fractured country’s political cohesion and its nascent petroleum-industry recovery. On Monday, NOC Chairman Mustafa Sanalla announced that the country has built its oil production up to 760,000 barrels per day and planned to go ahead with plans to expand production to 1.1 million bpd by August of this year. Just a few days earlier, that same official openly criticized Libya’s Government of National Accord (GNA), a United Nations-backed government whose formation last year raised hopes of political unity in a nation divided by warring militant groups. Sanalla said the GNA aimed to wrest control of NOC’s petroleum deals for power over Libya’s economic future. Oil profits will be the lifeblood of any successful future government in Libya. Under Gaddafi’s reign, fossil fuels made up over 90 percent of Tripoli’s revenues, which the […]

Libya’s oil output hits 760,000 bpd, highest since 2014: NOC

2 May 2017   Libya

Libya’s oil production has risen above 760,000 barrels per day (bpd), its highest since December 2014, the National Oil Corporation (NOC) said on Monday. Chairman Mustafa Sanalla said in a statement the NOC was working on plans to increase production further. He has previously set a goal of boosting output to 1.1 million bpd by August. The NOC gave no breakdown for the latest production increase, but it is mainly due to the reopening of the major western field of Sharara last week. Sharara was producing more than 200,000 bpd before its operations were halted by pipeline blockades twice in the past two months, causing national output to drop to less than 500,000 bpd. The NOC said on Thursday that the lifting of the blockade at Sharara would also allow […]

South Africa’s Huge Bet On Nuclear Energy

2 May 2017   South Africa

South Africa, the continent’s second largest economy, with the most organized business and financial sector in the region, has had its share of electricity related issues culminating in a spate of load shedding that upset its industrial customers of which there are quite a few. Eskom, the state owned utility, has gotten some of these problems behind it and has launched an ambitious generation building program that could add 9,500 megawatts to the presently installed electric generating capacity of 46,300 MWs. (Eskom supplies 95 percent of South Africa’s electricity needs, or about 45 percent of Africa’s entire electric generation., largely by burning coal. ) Despite this aggressive plan for multi-billion dollar power plant construction, that’s not why Eskom is back in the headlines. In 2014 South Africa’s President Jacob Zuma and Russia’s Vladimir Putin signed an agreement whereby Russia’s state-owned Rosatom would supply the country with eight nuclear power […]

Nigeria: NEITI Begins Audit of Oil Companies, Govt’s Revenues in 2015, 2016

2 May 2017   Nigeria

The Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) has disclosed that it has started the processes of a comprehensive independent audit of the oil and gas sector, as well as revenues earned by Nigeria in the sector in 2015 and 2016. NEITI stated in a statement, which was made available to THISDAY in Abuja that the independent audit would be conducted in line with the principles and standards of the global Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI). NEITI said its Executive Secretary, Mr. Waziri Adio, disclosed this in Lagos at a workshop for major oil companies and relevant government agencies expected to participate in the exercise. Adio, the statement added, explained that the workshop was designed to acquaint the participants with the structure and content of the template, the kinds of questions that NEITI would ask and the answers expected to be provided by the covered entities. “This workshop […]

Libya Oil Output Rebounds as Sharara, Feel Fields Restarted

1 May 2017   Libya

OPEC member pumping more than 700,000 barrels a day: Alaokali Biggest field Sharara at 216,400 barrels daily after restart Libya’s crude production rebounded to more than 700,000 barrels a day as the OPEC member’s biggest oil field and another deposit in its western region resumed pumping after a halt. The Sharara field is currently producing 216,400 barrels a day, while the El Feel, or Elephant, deposit is pumping 26,500 and is expected to boost output further, Jadalla Alaokali, a board member at the National Oil Corp., said Sunday by phone. Crude from Sharara started flowing to the Zawiya refinery after the port of Zawiya re-opened last week following a three-week closure . El Feel, idled since April 2015, also restarted last week. Clashes between armed groups and closures of fields have disrupted output as the country with Africa’s largest crude reserves struggles to revive its most important industry. Fighting […]

Libya confirms restart of its largest oil field

29 Apr 2017   Libya

Libya’s national oil company said there may be long-standing agreements in place to keep the taps open in the company to the tune of 200,000 barrels per day. Crude oil prices, which have been drifting deeper into negative territory for several straight sessions, faced further headwinds in early Thursday trading after reports surfaced that Libya was on the rebound. Referencing “a person with direct knowledge of the matter,” Bloomberg News reported Libya’s largest oil field, Sharara, had re-opened. Libya’s National Oil Corp. confirmed the restart with an announcement late Thursday that it was considering an understanding reached between regional leaders and security groups to keep the field open unconditionally, “restoring over 200,000 barrels per day of Libyan oil production with […]

Libya’s Oil Chief Rebukes U.N.-Backed Government

28 Apr 2017   Libya

A rift has opened between Libya’s U.N.-backed government and its powerful National Oil Co., threatening the fractured country’s political cohesion and its nascent petroleum-industry recovery. Libya’s oil-industry chief, Mustafa Sanallah, on Thursday openly criticized the Government of National Accord, a United Nations-backed government whose formation last year raised hopes of political unity in Libya after five years of…

Amid reshuffling, Africa-focused Tullow Oil ready to grow

27 Apr 2017   Africa

With a reshuffling in the front office underway, Tullow Oil said Wednesday its production offshore West Africa for the first quarter met expectations. Tullow CEO Aidan Heavey is handing the reins over to Paul McDade. The reshuffling follows what Heavey said was an “exceptionally busy” first quarter for the Africa-focused explorer. So far, the company has offered a greater stake in its operations in Uganda and is working to remediate some of the production infrastructure offshore West Africa, which was hampered last year by equipment problems. “As I hand over my role as CEO to Paul McDade, I am confident that Tullow has the financial and operational flexibility to prosper in 2017 and beyond,” Heavey said in a statement . For full-year 2016, the company said […]

Nigeria Seizes Foreign Vessel for Alleged Theft of Shell Crude

27 Apr 2017   Nigeria

Nigeria detained a vessel with crew members from countries including Pakistan, Indonesia and Ukraine for alleged theft of crude from a facility owned by Royal Dutch Shell Plc, the navy said. The tanker, MT TECNE, was apprehended before dawn on April 25 while loading crude from the Afremo platform operated by Shell’s Nigerian unit, Ibrahim Dewu, a navy spokesman, said Wednesday by phone from the southern city of Warri. “They had siphoned about 2,000 metric tons of crude oil from the loading jacket before their arrest,” he said. A Nigerian, three Ghanaians and a Benin national were among the crew arrested, he said. Organized criminal gangs have for years stolen crude from pipelines and facilities in the Niger River delta, home to the country’s oil industry, either for sale to vessels waiting offshore or for local refining. Nigeria’s Petroleum Ministry estimates that sometimes as much as 10 percent of […]

Will Libya’s Production Rebound As Its Largest Oil Field Re-Opens?

26 Apr 2017   Libya

Libya’s biggest oil field, Sharara, which has been offline for most of the past month, is set to reopen after the Petroleum Facilities Guard (PFG) reached an agreement with protesters who have repeatedly shut down the pipelines that pump oil into the field, according to PFG chief, Brigadier General Idriss Abu Khamada. The deal that the PFG has reached will lead to the reopening of the Sharara field, which produces 200,000 bpd, according to Khamada. At the end of March, unnamed armed factions were said to have blocked production at the Sharara and Wafa fields in western Libya, cutting the country’s total output by 252,000 bpd . Sharara alone produced 220,000 bpd before the shutdown, accounting for a large part of Libya’s overall 700,000 bpd production until that point. It resumed pumping oil after a two-year pause last December. Less than a week later, Libya’s National Oil Corporation (NOC) […]

Nigeria: Malabu Scandal – Group Wants Nigerian Govt Involved in Italian Trial

26 Apr 2017   Nigeria

The Human and Environmental Development Agenda, HEDA Resource Centre, has petitioned Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, requesting the representation of Nigeria as an aggrieved party in the hearing of the Milan Court’s prosecution of Shell and ENI with respect to the scandalous Malabu deal. In a petition addressed to Mr. Osinbajo, who also doubles as the Chairman Asset Recovery Committee, HEDA in the petition signed by its chairman, Olanrewaju Suraju, urged the federal government to request that the Italian court judge should recognize Nigeria as a civil party to the criminal proceeding in order to request adequate compensation for the damages received by the corruption scheme. “The media was awash about six years ago with information on how one of Nigeria’s richest oil field, OPL 245 was sold in shady circumstances and more than half of the $1.1 Billion paid to Malabu Oil and Gas for the procurement was used […]

Nigeria Said to Let Market Set Naira Rate on Exchange Window

25 Apr 2017   Nigeria

Central bank Governor Emefiele said to tolerate naira dropping Naira forward contracts jump to highest levels since March Nigeria’s central bank will let the market determine the naira’s rate in a new foreign-exchange window for portfolio investors as the nation struggles to revive its economy amid a dollar shortage. Naira forward contracts and banking stocks rose. Governor Godwin Emefiele told senior bankers that he would tolerate the naira weakening in the window, which started today, according to a person who attended meetings with the policy maker over the past two weeks. While that may cause the currency to depreciate to its black-market level, the central bank probably won’t devalue the interbank exchange rate, the person said, declining to be identified because he wasn’t authorized to speak publicly. Isaac Okorafor, a spokesman for the central bank, didn’t answer calls to his mobile or immediately respond to a text message. Nigeria […]

Eni-Operated Libya Oil Field to Re-Open After Two-Year Halt

21 Apr 2017   Libya

El-Feel deposit has yet to resume output due to power outage Field known also as Elephant has 80,000 barrel-a-day capacity Libya’s El-Feel oil field, operated by a venture between Eni SpA and the state producer, delayed its long-anticipated restart after a two-year halt in operations that crimped the OPEC nation’s output. The field, also known as Elephant, reopened Wednesday, according to a person familiar with the situation who asked not to be identified because of a lack of authorization to speak to media. But it hasn’t started pumping yet as officials await guarantees on the field’s security, the state-run National Oil Co. said in a statement on its website Thursday. Output can’t resume until operations restart at Sharara, Libya’s largest oil field, because Sharara helps power El-Feel, NOC said. Sharara isn’t operating because of a valve closure. Idris Bukhamada, a petroleum facilities guard brigadier, also said that an electricity […]

Giant Libyan Oilfield Reopens After 2 Year Outage

21 Apr 2017   Libya

The El-Feel oil field in western Libya—operated by a joint venture between Italy’s Eni and Libya’s National Oil Corporation (NOC)—reopened on Wednesday after two years, and expects to start pumping oil as soon as a power outage is fixed, Bloomberg reported on Thursday, citing a person familiar with the matter. Should the field, also known as Elephant, start producing soon, it could add up to 90,000 bpd to Libya’s oil output that has been crippled by continuous faction fighting and political turmoil. Authorities are working to fix soon the power outage at the field, which has been closed since April 2015, Petroleum Facilities Guard (PFG) Brigadier Idris Bukhamada told Bloomberg. In December last year, NOC confirmed in a statement the re-opening of Shahara and El-Feel fields, with production capacity of about 330,000 bpd and 90,000 bpd, respectively, after Rayayina Patrols Company of the PFG, Western Branch, announced lifting of […]

Oil Companies Exploiting Famine And Financial Ruin In South Sudan

21 Apr 2017   Sudan

South Sudan’s vulnerable financial state is making the civil-war-torn state easy prey for opportunistic oil and gas companies that could be offering Juba a fraction of the energy profits they would earn under stable circumstances. The South Sudanese government and three humanitarian agencies declared a famine in some parts of the country in February , while the newly independent nation is desperately trying to bring its oil back online. A string of deals signed by President Salva Kiir over the past four months has demonstrated the country’s desperation for fresh streams of revenue as the civil war now approaches its four-year anniversary. “The government is working hard to reinvigorate the petroleum industry in South Sudan by creating an enabling environment for international oil and gas companies to invest and operate,” according to Petroleum Minister Ezekiel Lul Gatkuoth. “It is up to the oil companies to come in, explore and […]

Africa: Two Oil Giants Could Face Trial in Italy Over Nigerian Deal

21 Apr 2017   Nigeria

This Thursday a Milan court is to decide whether to go ahead with criminal proceedings against the oil giant Shell and its Italian partner ENI in connection with the purchase of the rights to a Nigerian oil field. “Etete can smell the money. If, at 70 years old, he does turn his nose up at 1.2 bilion he is completely certifiable.” That’s a quote from a confidential email which is embarrassing the oil giant Shell. For years, Shell had strenuously denied that it knew anything about the involvement of convicted money launderer and former Nigerian oil minister Dan Etete in its purchase of the rights to one of Nigeria’s biggest oil fields. But last week, the British environmentalist and anti-corruption organization, Global Witness, published confidential emails written by a Shell employee. This correspondence, which went right to the top of the Shell management hierarchy, proves that there was a […]

Nigeria: Nowhere to Hide – Prosecutors Turn Up the Heat On Oil Execs At Heart of Corruption Scandal

21 Apr 2017   Nigeria

The latest developments in a multi-billion dollar corruption scandal show how the net is closing in on oil bosses who allow shady deals to happen on their watch – and how vital global transparency rules that make such deals much harder must be upheld. Last month, we celebrated a huge victory for the people of Nigeria when news broke that the Nigerian government seized a valuable block OPL 245 from oil giants Shell and Eni. The move followed years of investigations by Global Witness and our partners into the companies’ backroom deals and undisclosed payments that led to them getting hold of the lucrative block. This was truly historic news in itself – but it’s just the start of the story. Developments are occurring thick and fast as the heat is turned up on the individuals at the centre of the scandal. On Thursday, Italian authorities requested that Shell, […]

Russia interested in oil and gas opportunities in Senegal

18 Apr 2017   Russia, Senegal

Russia has an opportunity to foster a better trade relationship with Senegal, an emerging West African oil producer, the Russian foreign minister said.  Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov hosted his Senegalese counterpart, Mankeur Ndiaye, at his Moscow office to discuss opportunities in the energy sector.  “Our trade and economic cooperation has been on the rise, our companies have been looking at a number of promising projects in Senegal, including those in the oil and gas industry, ship-building and fishing sectors,” the Russia foreign minister was quoted by state news agency Tass as saying.  Russian interest in Senegal follows a March decision by the British subsidiary of China National Offshore Oil Corp. to outline areas of mutual interest offshore Gambia and Senegal with Australian energy company FAR Ltd.  FAR Ltd. has a stake in the SNE and FAN prospects off the coast of Senegal. When discovered in 2014, SNE in particular was considered one of the larger discoveries ever made. By the company’s estimates, more than 1.5 billion barrels of oil may be in basins off the coast of Senegal.

Nigeria to Restore Oil Output Even as OPEC Weighs Extending Cuts

14 Apr 2017   Nigeria

Bonga, Forcados facilities will restart by July after work OPEC must extend cutbacks to keep prices above $50 a barrel Nigeria will revive oil production this summer as it completes maintenance and repairs, and expects fellow OPEC members to continue to cut their output in the second half of the year, Oil Minister Emmanuel Kachikwu said. Africa’s second-biggest producer will finish repairs on the Forcados pipeline by June and complete maintenance at the Bonga oilfield the following month, Kachikwu said in a Bloomberg Television interview. The country’s output slumped to 1.27 million barrels a day last month, the lowest in decades, according to data provided by the nation. It aims to reach 2.2 million barrels a day. Play VideoPlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration Time 0:00Loaded: 0%Progress: 0%Stream TypeLIVERemaining Time -0:00Playback Rate1 Chapters Chapters captions settings, opens captions settings dialog captions off, selected CaptionsFullscreen This is a modal window. No compatible source […]