In 2008, as Beijing geared up for the summer Olympics by stockpiling crude oil, the world blamed the Communist government for inflating prices. Now eyes are back on China, wondering if demand from the Asian nation will bolster falling crude prices. With oil prices falling to their lowest level in years, the Chinese are taking… Keep reading →
Understanding China’s domestic oil market is akin to following an opaque and moving target, but a new report by independent price reporting organization Platts highlights the changing dynamics of one area in the Chinese oil market that is most responsive to economic signals: China’s teakettle refiners. Playing Against Monopolies Monopolized by state-owned but publically listed… Keep reading →
When China released its 2015 targets of 6.5 billion cubic meters of shale gas a few years back (source, in Chinese), it looked like the goal was out of reach. At the time, the country had zero commercial shale gas production and domestic natural gas extraction was mainly in the hands of state-owned companies. But… Keep reading →
First, BP dropped plans to invest in a refinery in Qinzhou. Then PetroChina delayed plans for it’s Kunming refinery, part of a larger plan that includes a pipeline linking Southwestern China to the Bay of Benegal through Myanmar (bypassing the Malacca Straits). Now, two of the largest Chinese national oil companies (NOCs) are paring back… Keep reading →
As Chinese citizens demand cleaner air, but put more cars on the road, Beijing is retooling its policies towards fuel standards and pricing, while Chinese refiners adjust company strategy. Watch for these forces to play out in the next few years, with the potential for ripple affects throughout Asia, especially in the gasoline and diesel… Keep reading →
We hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving and ate far too much yesterday… PetroChina has agreed to buy 25% of the West Qurna oil field in Iraq from ExxonMobil for an undisclosed sum. An analyst at Sanford Bernstein previously estimated the value of ExxonMobil’s 60% interest in the field at $3 billion. [Bloomberg] An easing… Keep reading →
A recent Wall Street Journal article discussed major oil company reserve holdings and how investors should evaluate a company’s reserve quality, quantity and global geographic distribution. It is an interesting story about a very important topic, but a lack of clarity with regard to some of the methodology and terminology leaves many questions unanswered. However,… Keep reading →
Oilfield service companies are being told to prepare for a ramp-up in natural gas drilling next year as the outlook for prices continues to improve, according to Barclays Oil Services and Drilling analyst James West. West presented the results of a semiannual survey of more than 300 oil and gas companies’ budgeted global upstream capital… Keep reading →
For much of the past decade the answer to almost any major economic question had at least a little bit of “China” in its answer, and for energy the growth of what has become the world’s second largest economy and remains its most populous nation has been central to market growth and disruption.
Without China’s growth, oil prices would have been lower, leavening the expensive and much-debated fight over the race to renewable power in the US. With less growth in China, natural gas companies in the US might have had fewer buyers for their barely profitable (or even loss-making) fields as the technology developed to expand production in turn brought down prices. Keep reading →
Sustained growth in spending on exploration and production across the globe will focus on plays outside North America, a survey from a global bank concludes, despite the country’s growing profile and its potential to become the top global crude producer in coming decades.
Global exploration-and-production spending is poised to reach a record $644 billion by the end of 2013, a semi-annual Barclays analysis predicts. The spending report also foresees strong oil prices, which have emerged as the principal bellwether for growth in E&P budgets. Keep reading →