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As coronavirus pandemic spreads throughout the world, major energy companies in the United States enforced work-from-home rules for office staff and began health checks for remote or critical workers starting Monday. Firms like BP, Exxon Mobil, Kinder Morgan, Motiva Enterprises and Royal Dutch Shell have directed most office staff to work from home. The COVID-19 pandemic has infected over 156,000 people, with more than 5800 deaths worldwide.
Grupo R has signed a contract with Shell for the lease of the La Muralla IV platform. Under the scope of this contract, Shell will have the drilling rig and a support team to drill three wells in the Gulf of Mexico. The activities will begin in the third quarter of 2020. This contract is a part of Shell's strategy to escalate deep-sea exploration in its Mexican operations.
Oil supermajor, Royal Dutch Shell posted a 50% drop in profits to $2.9 billion for the fourth quarter of 2019, falling short on forecasts. Shell's profits dipped down to its lowest in over three years over weaker oil and gas prices. CEO Ben van Beurden said the company’s commitment to conclude its $25 billion share buyback programme in 2020 remained “unchanged”.
Chevron, Royal Dutch Shell and Mubadala received concession for exploration over the Red Sea area in an international tender on Sunday. Egypt awarded the first block to Chevron, the second block to Shell and third to both Shell and Mubadala. The total exploration will cover an area of around 10,000 square kilometers which is approximately 3860 square miles. The ministry has required a minimum investment of $326 million in the project.
Shell has dropped out of the Khazar offshore project in Kazakhstan, while a multinational consortium including Shell is also getting rid of its plans for the Kalamkas block. The Khazar project has seen approximately $900 million in investments from Shell. In a statement, Shell said, “The (Khazar) project was not competitive enough versus other opportunities in Shell’s global portfolio,”. KazMunayGaz and Oman Oil Co were Shell’s partner in Khazar.
In protest against Shell’s plan to abandon parts of the giant structures in place in the British North Sea, Greenpeace activists, yesterday, boarded two Royal Dutch Shell oil platforms in the region. Photographs show two people climbing one of the giant, rusty structures and unfurling a banner which read “Clean up your mess, Shell!”. The British supermajor is currently looking for Governmental approval to abandon the steel legs of the platforms.
The annual Oil and Money conference dinner last night was stormed by Greenpeace climate activists, who branded oil majors Shell and BP as ‘Climate Criminals’. The protests happened as the Executive of the Year award was due to pass from BP CEO Bob Dudley to Shell’s Ben van Beurden. The protestors also labeled the event as a “climate crime scene”.
Canadian EPC major, SNC-Lavalin has secured a contract from Shell Australia for the provision of operations and maintenance workforce for the QGC upstream asset. The three-year-long contract will see SNC-Lavalin providing approximately 300 personnel to continue the existing operation and maintenance program for Shell. The QGC asset comprises of 24 field compression stations, six central gas processing plants (CPP), five sales stations and one power station.
Aberdeen-based contractor, Dolphin Drilling’s Borgland Dolphin semi-submersible drilling rig has landed more work from AS Norske Shell. Under the contract, Dolphin will provide rig support for drilling and completion operations on a gas producer well on the Knarr field. Work is slated for commencement in early 2020. The contractor will be working under the operator’s One Team system with integrated drilling and completions providers.
Norwegian oil major, Equinor has concluded the acquisition of Shell’s stake in the Caesar Tonga oil field. The acquisition has increased Equinor’s interest in the field to 46%. The operatorship of the field remains with Anadarko Petroleum, with a 33.75% interest, while Chevron owns a 20.25% interest. The deal between Equinor and Shell which was first announced in May 2019, recently received approval from the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management.
Two explosions and a gas leak at a chemical plant south of Rotterdam have resulted in a heavy fine for energy major Shell. The company has been fined $2.8 million by a Dutch court for violating Dutch labour and environmental laws. The company has also been found responsible for a leak of ethylene oxide gas that lasted from Nov.14, 2015, until Jan. 27, 2016, at the same plant.
Shell has entered into an agreement with US refiner, PBF Energy to sell out its Martinez refinery in approximately $1 billion. Shell will pay ~$70 million in turnaround costs estimated in the first quarter of 2020. The oil supermajor was trying to sell the 1915-commissioned Martinez refinery for at least four years now. The 157,000 bpd-Martinez plant processes crude oil into gasoline, jet fuel, diesel and other refined products.
To pay for its share of drilling costs, Cluff Natural Resources (CLNR) has raised £15m through placing of 854.2million shares with new and existing investors. Shell has recently completed a 70% farm-in to the P2252 licence in the southern sector, containing the 100 million-barrel Penascola prospect. It also signed a deal to farm in 50% to Cluff’s P2347 licence which contains the Selene discovery.
Oil supermajor Shell has announced about achieving production at the 175,000 boed Appomattox floating production system in Gulf of Mexico, months ahead of schedule. Shell upstream director, Andy Brown said, "That Appomattox was safely brought online ahead of schedule and far under budget is a testament to our ongoing commitment to drive down costs through efficiency improvements during execution,". Appomattox has seen more than 40% reduction in costs since 2015.
Supermajor Shell has established its first lubricant laboratory in the Indian city of Bengaluru. The laboratory will serve as an aid to India's OEMs and customers through valuable data analysis and new technologies. The addition of Shell Lubricants R&D laboratory unit is in line with Shell’s direct global reach in India, which is the third largest market for lubricants in the world.
Senior executives at Shell and Eni are now facing additional corruption allegations over a Nigerian oil deal. In a London lawsuit hearing, Nigerian government asserted about the involvement of executives, including CEOs, into over $1 billion in bribery payments. The years-long dispute over exploration rights to OPL 245 has made it to courtrooms all across Europe. Nigeria has separately prosecuted JP Morgan Chase for transferring payments for the deal.
In a statement released yesterday, oil giant Saudi Aramco informed that it will buy out Shell’s stake in refining joint venture SASREF for approximately $631 million. The Saudi Aramco Shell Refinery Co. (SASREF) facility holds a processing capacity of 305,000 barrels of crude oil per day. While the acquisition is in part of Aramco’s downstream expansion strategy, it falls in line with Shell’s renewed focus on lower carbon businesses.
Oilfield services giant, Halliburton has informed about securing an integrated services contract with Royal Dutch Shell. The contract pertains to post-salt development and pre-salt exploration in the Campos and Santos Basins in Brazil. The three-year contract will require Halliburton to offer drilling services for bringing greater efficiency to the project through the integration of multiple product offerings and technologies.