Cargoes of West African crude oil sailing east are on track to fall in August on fierce competition, shaky demand and disruptions in Nigerian loadings that forced at least one cancelled cargo, according to Reuters.
A total of 55 cargoes for 1.685 million barrels per day (bpd) are booked to sail to Asia this month. The total is just under two per cent lower than the planned bookings in July, but is more than eight per cent lower than August last year.
Overall buying in Asia is in question as refinery margins hit five-year lows last month due to a growing excess of refined products.
Some refineries are already processing less crude oil, while others are preparing for maintenance later in the third quarter.
At the same time, nearly all crude oil sellers are targeting Asia. Imports of Iranian crude oil from China, India, Japan and South Korea increased markedly in June, the latest month of data available, as Iran’s efforts to regain market share lost during years of sanctions paid off. As a result, some West African oil has been edged out. The biggest difference from a year earlier was in bookings for India, due in part to the unpredictability of Nigerian oil loadings.
Meanwhile, a Bloomberg survey has shown that crude oil output from members of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) was disrupted in July by militant attacks in Nigeria and political disputes in Libya.
Output from the 13 established members of the OPEC, excluding new entrant Gabon, fell by 80,000 barrels a day last month, a Bloomberg survey of analysts, oil companies and ship-tracking data showed.
Nigeria led the decline with a 70,000-barrel-a-day monthly drop to 1.52 million, while Libya and Saudi Arabia reduced output by 20,000 and 40,000 barrels a day respectively.
Gabon joined OPEC on July 1, becoming the smallest member with average output of 210,000 barrels a day. Because the group expanded to 14 nations, total production in July actually increased to 33.24 million barrels a day from 33.11 million the prior month. Gabon initially joined the group in 1975, but ended its membership 20 years later.
Nigeria has suffered steep crude output losses this year as militant attacks targeted oil infrastructure. Production in May fell to the lowest level in more than 27 years. While output recovered in June, it fell again in July following the disruption of supplies to the Qua Iboe terminal, which shipped an average of 342,000 barrels a day last year.
Libya’s production fell by 20,000 barrels a day to 300,000 in July. The Arabian Gulf Oil Co. halted output at the Sarir field last month after a protest by oil-facility guards shut the Eastern port of Hariga, blocking exports. The Tripoli-based Government of National Accord reached a deal with guards last week to reopen Es Sider and Ras Lanuf, two of its biggest oil terminals that have been closed since 2014, although shipments have yet to resume. Output disruptions helped raise West Texas Intermediate crude.
Communities in Delta State Shut OML30 Operates by Heritage Energy Operational Services Ltd
The OML30 operated by Heritage Energy Operational Services Limited in Delta State has been shut down by the host communities for failing to meet its obligations to the 112 host communities.
The host communities, led by its Management Committee/President Generals, had accused the company of gross indifference and failure in its obligations to the host communities despite several meetings and calls to ensure a peaceful resolution.
The station with a production capacity of 80,000 barrels per day and eight flow stations operates within the Ughelli area of Delta State.
The host communities specifically accused HEOSL of failure to pay the GMOU fund for the last two years despite mediation by the Delta State Government on May 18, 2020.
Also, the host communities accused HEOSL of ‘total stoppage of scholarship award and payment to host communities since 2016’.
The Chairman, Dr Harrison Oboghor and Secretary, Mr Ibuje Joseph that led the OML30 host communities explained to journalists on Monday that the host communities had resolved not to backpedal until all their demands were met.
Crude Oil Recovers from 4 Percent Decline as Joe Biden Wins
Oil Prices Recover from 4 Percent Decline as Joe Biden Wins
Crude oil prices rose with other financial markets on Monday following a 4 percent decline on Friday.
This was after Joe Biden, the former Vice-President and now the President-elect won the race to the White House.
Global benchmark oil, Brent crude oil, gained $1.06 or 2.7 percent to $40.51 per barrel on Monday while the U.S West Texas Intermediate crude oil gained $1.07 or 2.9 percent to $38.21 per barrel.
On Friday, Brent crude oil declined by 4 percent as global uncertainty surged amid unclear US election and a series of negative comments from President Trump. However, on Saturday when it became clear that Joe Biden has won, global financial markets rebounded in anticipation of additional stimulus given Biden’s position on economic growth and recovery.
“Trading this morning has a risk-on flavor, reflecting increasing confidence that Joe Biden will occupy the White House, but the Republican Party will retain control of the Senate,” Michael McCarthy, chief market strategist at CMC Markets in Sydney.
“The outcome is ideal from a market point of view. Neither party controls the Congress, so both trade wars and higher taxes are largely off the agenda.”
The president-elect and his team are now working on mitigating the risk of COVID-19, grow the world’s largest economy by protecting small businesses and the middle class that is the backbone of the American economy.
“There will be some repercussions further down the road,” said OCBC’s economist Howie Lee, raising the possibility of lockdowns in the United States under Biden.
“Either you’re crimping energy demand or consumption behavior.”
Nigeria, Other OPEC Members Oil Revenue to Hit 18 Year Low in 2020
Revenue of OPEC Members to Drop to 18 Year Low in 2020
The United States Energy Information Administration (EIA) has predicted that the oil revenue of members of the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) will decline to 18-year low in 2020.
EIA said their combined oil export revenue will plunge to its lowest level since 2002. It proceeded to put a value to the projection by saying members of the oil cartel would earn around $323 billion in net oil export in 2020.
“If realised, this forecast revenue would be the lowest in 18 years. Lower crude oil prices and lower export volumes drive this expected decrease in export revenues,” it said.
The oil expert based its projection on weak global oil demand and low oil prices because of COVID-19.
It said this coupled with production cuts by OPEC members in recent months will impact net revenue of the cartel in 2020.
It said, “OPEC earned an estimated $595bn in net oil export revenues in 2019, less than half of the estimated record high of $1.2tn, which was earned in 2012.
“Continued declines in revenue in 2020 could be detrimental to member countries’ fiscal budgets, which rely heavily on revenues from oil sales to import goods, fund social programmes, and support public services.”
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