1. EIA outlook pegs summer gasoline prices lower than 2012 (April 11, 2013)
As per the US Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) latest Short-Term Energy Outlook, the retail price for regular gasoline for the summer driving season is expected to be lower than the average prices during the preceding two summers. The price is expected to be USD3.63/ gal indicating declining crude oil prices, expected gasoline consumption and higher inventory levels of gasoline. The average price of Brent crude oil is expected to average USD107.50/bbl in the coming summer season, down 1.4% from last summer.
2. Budget proposal again targets oil and gas tax preferences (April 10, 2013)
In the federal budget proposal, the treatment given to the energy sector is quite similar to the one given in the previous budgets. If the federal budget proposal on the energy sector is enacted, then the oil and gas companies in the US will be subject to higher taxes on various fronts. The new federal budget proposal is expected to significantly increase federal spending on non-fossil energy. A new feature of the administration’s proposal for fiscal 2014 grants USD2 billion from federal oil and gas royalties over 10 years to the new Energy Security Trust, which would fund research on alternative transportation fuels.
3. ConocoPhillips Suspends 2014 Alaska Drilling Plans (April 10, 2013)
Despite being confident of its expertise and ability to safely conduct offshore Arctic operations, ConocoPhillips has decided to put on hold its 2014 drilling plans for Alaska’s Chukchi Sea owing to uncertainties of evolving federal regulatory requirements and operational permitting standards. The company was awarded 98 exploration lease tracts in the Chukchi Sea Outer Continental Shelf in 1998 and the leases are expected to expire in 2019.
4. Chesapeake Puts Utica Acreage Up for Sale (April 9, 2013)
Real estate industry insiders have indicated that Chesapeake Energy is offering 94,000 net acres of Utica/Point Pleasant shale acreage in Ohio. The acreage includes two operated and one non-operated wells. Chesapeake has till now announced the sale of assets worth USD1.5 billion in 2013 and the company is believed to be selling assets to reduce its debt.
1. Lukoil Targets 150,000 Barrels per Day from West Qurna-2 (April 9, 2013)
OAO Lukoil Holdings, Russia’s largest non-state oil producer, is aiming at a production target of 150,000 barrels of oil per day from West Qurna-2, the giant oilfield of Iraq, by the end of December 2013. West Qurna is expected to raise the production to 400,000 barrels a day by April 2014 and 550,000 barrels a day in 2015. Lukoil and Statoil were awarded the technical service contract at West Qurna-2 in December 2009. However, after Statoil withdrew from the project in 2012, Lukoil increased its stake in the oilfield to 75%, the remaining 25% being held by Iraq’s state-owned North Oil Company.
1. Petrobras Expects to Raise About USD20 Billion in 2013 (April 10, 2013)
Petrobras or Petroleo Brasileiro, the state run energy company of Brazil, expects to raise USD20 billion in 2013, from debt issues and bank loans to fund its ambitious USD237 billion investment plan. Petrobras’ latest five year investment plan covers the 2013-2017 period. The company plans to use the funds raised from the plan to boost crude-oil production to 2.75 million barrels a day by 2017, with a large share of that output coming from the subsalt region offshore Brazil.
1. Oil India Ltd to set up overseas arm for oil and gas acquisitions (April 12, 2013)
The Board of Oil India Ltd. (OIL) has approved the creation of an overseas arm to acquire oil and gas properties abroad. OIL’s overseas subsidiary is expected to have a full board headed by a Managing Director. Till now, OIL had been partnering with Indian Oil Corp (IOC) for its overseas ventures. All the future overseas acquisitions are expected to be done by the new subsidiary and the assets that OIL already holds will be transferred to the new subsidiary.
2. Will continue to buy oil from Iran, says Foreign Secretary Ranjan Mathai (April 11, 2013)
India’s Foreign Secretary has said that India will continue to import oil from Iran despite the economic sanctions imposed by the US and UN against Iran. The secretary further stated that the recent decline in import of oil from Iran was due to logistic and banking issues and not due to the sanctions. The secretary said that it is the oil marketing companies that take import decisions on a commercial basis and the government has no role to play in the recent decline in imports of oil from Iran.
3. RIL gas output falls to all-time low; shuts ninth well in KG-D6 (April 11, 2013)
According to a status report by the Directorate General of Hydrocarbons, Reliance Industries Ltd. (RIL) has shut its ninth well on the main gas fields in the eastern offshore KG-D6 block, for ‘reservoir build-up study’. With the shutdown of the ninth well, output has hit an all-time low of 15.5 million standard cubic metres per day. RIL was forced to shut down the previous eight wells due to water and sand ingress. Out of the 22 wells drilled on D1&D3 fields, RIL has put only 18 on production till now and half of these wells are already shut.
4. RIL discovers new reserves of gas below KG-D6 basin (April 10, 2013)
RIL has discovered a new reservoir of natural gas below its existing fields in the KG-D6 basin. Industry insiders believe that the new discovery has raised the prospects of increase in output from the region that had been declining since a long time. In the beginning the output from the block was phenomenal. However, June 2010 onwards, the output started declining as the deep sea reservoir was geologically more complex than anticipated. Although the details of the reservoir are not yet known, industry officials believe it to be a significant discovery.
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