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"The recent breakthrough on a Covid-19 vaccine is a hope for the swift recovery of global energy demand next year. HSBC Bank analyst Gordon Gray recently stated-"The recent news around Covid-19 vaccines has boosted crude prices as markets start to look to a return to some sort of normality in 2021, also we expect OPEC+ to err on the side of caution as it evaluates how the market evolves.”
A supertanker carrying about 2 million barrels of oil caught fire in the Indian Ocean off the east coast of Sri Lanka. The tanker was sailing towards India’s Paradip refinery when it caught fire. One of the 23 crew members is found missing and one injured. The navy personnel at the scene have reported that fire was under control.
Energy researcher, IHS Markit has forecasted a huge crude oil storage crunch in the coming time, with the situation close to becoming a reality in as little as three months. The consultant said that current rates of supply and demand indicate an increase in inventories by 1.8 billion barrels over the first half of 2020. There are only an estimated 1.6 billion barrels in storage capacity currently available.
Energy Ministry of Kazakhstan, KazTransOil has informed that it has reduced its exports to China and is changing the supply schedules to domestic refineries. Organic chloride contamination was found earlier this month in crude supplied by a Kazakh. This step has been taken to restrict the spread of contaminated oil. According to sources, oil transit via Russia has also been brought down by 100,000 tonnes for February.
On Sunday, Numaligarh Refinery Limited (NRL) of Assam got its first consignment of imported Miri Crude Oil from PETRONAS, Malaysia. This is the first occasions when NRL has imported crude oil to be processed in the refinery. MD of NRL stated, "This landmark development would assist us in enhancing Refinery throughput and as our distillate yield is high, this will increase our margins".
Government data released yesterday indicated that Chinese crude oil throughput ramped up in April to hit record daily levels. The rising production levels at private refineries buoyed up the crude oil production in the country. Refinery runs saw an increase of 5% from the previous year to 52.1 million tonnes, matching the record throughput of 12.68 million barrels per day (bpd).
Canada-based Suncor Energy has reported a profit in its first quarter of this fiscal year. The company has been benefitted by the improved Canadian heavy crude pricing because of production cutback by Alberta. Suncor's net earnings increased to $899.62 million. Suncor has been largely profited from the crude oil and refined product inventory valuation. The earnings of the company have beaten the estimates of the analysts.
Saudi Aramco has informed that its subsidiary, Aramco Trading has signed an agreement with Poland's leading refiner, PKN Orlen. Under the scope of this agreement, Aramco will supply Arabian crude oil to Poland's PKN in exchange of which it will receive a similar volume of high sulfur fuel oil from the refiner. Aramco said that the company wants to position a set volume of crude in different geographies.
Saudi Aramco being the world's top crude exporter might also become the biggest user of fossil fuel. It is planning to double its refining network in order to handle as much as 10mn barrels a day by 2030. Currently, Aramco's more than a third oil is being fed to its own fully-owned and joint venture refineries. The expansion “would make it the biggest refiner in the world by some margin”.
Mexico’s newly elected President yesterday revealed plans of constructing an $8 billion oil refinery and to renovate six others in a bid to lower Mexico’s dependence on imported fuel. Lopez Obrador, who took the President’s office in Dec, is looking to finance $3.65 billion for the state-owned oil major, Pemex. In 2018, Pemex has produced less than 1.8 bbpd of crude, heading towards 14th consecutive year of declining oil output.
Oil prices in the international market dropped today over signs of increasing supply and rising concerns of weak demand due to global economic slowdown. Benchmark Brent crude futures contract fell 0.61%, and were traded at $74.58 per barrel. US WTI crude futures dipped to $64.90 a barrel. Data releases by EIA yesterday showed a climb in crude oil inventories for a sixth straight week.
Azerbaijan’s state-owned SOCAR is all set to start-up its new refinery in Turkey, next week. The $6.3 billion Star refinery will provide feedstock to Turkish petrochemicals firm, Petkim to help cut Turkey’s reliance on imported refined oil products. SOCAR’s refinery would have the capacity to process about 200,000 barrels of crude per day, estimated to produce 1.6 million tonnes of naphtha and 420,000 tonnes of xylenes, apart from other products.
If sources were to be believed, the Joint Technical Committee of OPEC and non-OPEC will meet this Sept 17 to decide on the distribution of the agreed boost in oil production. Proposals on how to distribute the increase have come from Iran, Algeria, Russia and Venezuela. Elevation in the oil production was decided in June to ease supply curbs, when the cartel met in Vienna.
When the market found an equilibrium between decreasing US crude inventories and Sino-American trade tensions, oil prices calmed down on Friday. The US crude inventories have touched their lowest since 2015 and the emerging market has signs of economic weakness. Among all these disturbances, Brent dipped and was traded at $76.46 a barrel while WTI increased a little, at $67.79 per barrel.
The oil giant, ExxonMobil raised a concern regarding the blockade at Nigerian oil facilities by previous employees. According to the company, these actions have put the country’s crude oil production at risk. Exxon’s subsidiary, Mobil Producing Nigeria informed that the company’s production is almost 550,000 bpd and added that "continued denial of access to production facilities could impact the company's ability to safely continue production operations".
China-based PetroChina Co’s net profit in the recent quarter folded twice from a year earlier. The profit of second-quarter increased to $2.48 billion from the corresponding last year quarter. The revenue of the recent quarter has climbed up by 17.5% which is highest since the 2014 third quarter. The surge in the overall earnings was due to high crude oil prices, strong gas sales, and good refining margins.
China’s oil giant, Sinopec will increase its production in the second half of this year. The oil major informed on Sunday that it will take up the production to 146 million barrels of crude oil in the second innings of yearly production which was 143.6 million barrels in the in the initial half of the year. Sinopec has decided to process 121 million tonnes of crude this time.
The latest monthly statistical report coming from American Petroleum Institute (API) showed record 4.4 MMbpd productions of natural gas liquids (NGL) in US, last month. US also leveled the previously set record for crude oil production at 10.7 MMbpd. Solid economic activities in July drove the demand for US petroleum to 20.6 MMbpd, which is its highest level in 11 years.