Crude oil prices are set to post a sixth straight week of gains on the back of a tighter market and easing recession fears.
Friday, August 04, 2023
The coordinated supply-side management of Saudi Arabia and Russia has set oil prices for a sixth weekly gain, with the two OPEC+ heavyweights extending their production and export cuts into September. Brent has moved above $85 per barrel, the highest level since March, and one could argue there is still further upside coming from Friday’s attack on Russia’s Black Sea oil terminals and swelling backwardation.
Saudi Arabia Extends Production Cuts. In a press release published by Saudi Arabia’s news agency SPA, the Middle Eastern kingdom pledged to extend its voluntary production cut of 1 million b/d for another month to September, suggesting that the cuts might be deepened if need be.
Russia Lowers September Export Cut Pledge. Russia pledged to crude oil exports by 300,000 b/d in September, down from its 500,000 b/d vow for August, publishing the press release less than an hour after Riyadh announced its production cut extension, hinting at close coordination between the two.
India Courts Qatar for 20-Year LNG Deal. India’s state-controlled gas firm GAIL (NSE:GAIL) is close to finalizing a long-term LNG supply contract with Qatar to buy at least 1 mtpa LNG for a period of more than 20 years, the second such deal to be concluded by an Indian firm with QatarEnergy.
US Renewable Subsidies Soar to $15.6 Billion. According to the EIA, US subsidies for renewable energy producers more than doubled between 2016 and 2022 from $7.4 billion to $15.6 billion most recently, with the solar industry benefitting the most from the tax incentives provided.
Trafigura’s Congolese Copper Project Faces Overruns. Commodity trading house Trafigura has been compelled to seek new funding of some $200-300 million for its $600 million copper-cobalt projects Mutoshi and Etoile in the Democratic Republic of Congo amidst cost overruns.
UK Authorities Investigate Westinghouse Takeover. The UK’s Competition and Markets Authority said it was investigating the Cameco-Brookfield Renewable Partners’ $7.9 billion bid to buy nuclear firm Westinghouse, with the deal boosting the Canadian uranium producer’s (NYSE:CCJ) stock by 47% in 2023 to date.
Guyana Delays Licensing Round Again. South American oil producer Guyana set a new deadline for its first-ever competitive auction for offshore blocks, delaying the licensing round for the third time already to 12 September amidst delays in “establishing a modern regulatory framework”.
Nigeria Gasoline Protests Called Off. A day after Nigeria’s largest labour unions NLC and TUC organized countrywide protests against the removal of gasoline subsidies, the demonstrations were called off after President Bola Tinubu vowed to restart the Port Harcourt refinery by December.
Libya’s Oil Outlook Improves as Force Majeures get Lifted. Libya’s National Oil Corporation announced this week it was informed by ENI (BIT:ENI) and BP (NYSE:BP) that both companies would lift their force majeure in Libya and resume exploration activities in the western regions of the country.
Middle Eastern Nations Vie for Giant Offshore Field. Saudi Arabia and Kuwait reiterated their claims on full sovereign rights over the offshore Durra gas field (also known as Arash in Iran), prompting Tehran to invite Kuwait’s foreign minister to Iran to discuss the future for the field’s demarcation.
ADNOC Continues to Widen Portfolio. The national oil company of the United Arab Emirates ADNOC signed a deal to purchase a 30% equity stake in the Absheron offshore gas and condensate field in Azerbaijan, joining SOCAR and TotalEnergies as the field ramps up production from its Phase 1.
US Adds Copper to Critical Minerals List. The US Department of Energy added copper to its Critical Materials list of key materials with high risks of supply disruption, boosting prospects of future copper projects on American soil as they’d be eligible for extended IRA tax credits.
India’s SPR Build-Out Sparks Huge Interest. India’s planned build-out of an extended Strategic Petroleum Reserve, currently amounting to only 39 million barrels, sparked interest across the oil markets with BP (NYSE:BP), Shell (LON:SHEL), PetroChina, Trafigura, Vitol and Glencore all declaring interest.
Brazil’s Lula Pushes for Amazon Drilling. Despite Brazil’s environment agencies' rejection of Petrobras’ (NYSE:PBR) plans for exploration drilling in the delta of the Amazon River, the country’s President Lula da Silva defended the appraisal of new frontiers and said the watchdog’s ban is “not definitive”.
By Michael Kern for Oilprice.com
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