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Oil Rises to $48 Ahead of OPEC Meeting

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Silhouette of oil platform in sea against moody sky at sunset

Global oil benchmark, Brent crude, rose on Monday to its highest level in a month on rising speculation that major producers may work out ways to support prices in an oversupplied market.

Brent, against which half of the world’s oil is priced, rose by 2.6 per cent to $48.20 per barrel as of 6:05pm Nigerian time.

This came as indication emerged that the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries could revive talks on freezing oil output levels when it meets non-OPEC nations next month.

Nigeria’s output hit its lowest in over two decades this year due to attacks on oil sites, and Libya is pumping a fraction of the pre-conflict level – raising the question of what level they should limit supplies at.

While Nigeria supported April’s freeze initiative, Libya declined to join the talks.

OPEC members will meet on the sidelines of the International Energy Forum, which groups producers and consumers, in Algeria on September 26-28.

Top exporter, Saudi Arabia, appears to favour higher prices, although Iran, Iraq and Russia present obstacles to a deal, according to Reuters.

Saudi Arabia sharply raised expectations for a global production deal, with its Energy Minister, Khalid al-Falih, saying the country would work with OPEC and non-OPEC members to help stabilise oil markets.

“The comments by the Saudi energy minister give a positive indication that they are willing to go for a freeze deal but the question remains: on what level?” said an OPEC source from a key Middle Eastern producer.

“Will the freeze be at January levels? And what about Iran? And then there is Nigeria, which has lost a lot of production since January,” the source added.

The Russian Energy Minister, Alexander Novak, was quoted as saying that Russia was consulting with Saudi Arabia and other producers to achieve oil market stability, adding that the door was still open for more discussions on output freeze, if needed.

Saudi Arabia boosted output to 10.67 million barrels per day in July from 10.2 million in January, when the freeze idea first emerged.

Since 2014, Saudi Arabia, OPEC’s de facto leader, has been raising output to drive higher cost producers out of the market and win back share from rivals such as the United States, where output soared on the back of the high oil price of the past decade.

As a result, oil prices collapsed to $27 per barrel in January from as high as $115 in mid-2014, capping output of the US but also hitting hard Saudi Arabia’s budget and resulting in a record fiscal deficit for Riyadh.

A previous attempt to freeze output at January levels to support prices collapsed in April after Saudi Arabia said it wanted all producers, including regional rival Iran, to join the initiative.

Iran had argued that it needed to regain market share lost during years of Western sanctions, which have been only softened in January.

Over the past few months, Iran, OPEC’s third biggest producer, has boosted output close to pre-sanctions levels and has repeatedly signalled it has no plans to join the freeze initiative.

But since the collapse of freeze talks in April, Iran is no longer the only obstacle to the deal.

Iraq, OPEC’s second largest producer, which in April was saying it would support the deal, has since agreed with oil majors on new contract terms to develop its massive fields, which will allow output to rise further next year by up to 350,000 bpd.

Nigeria and Libya could present further complicating factors, Reuters quoted delegates as saying.

Is the CEO/Founder of Investors King Limited. A proven foreign exchange research analyst and a published author on Yahoo Finance, Nasdaq, Entrepreneur.com, Investorplace, and many more. He has over two decades of experience in global financial markets.

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FG Installs And Commissions N8 Billion Cargo Scanners at Lagos Port

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Lekki Deep Seaport

The federal government has finally put the N8 billion non-intrusive inspection (NII) equipment, also known as cargo scanners, at the Apapa Port complex after receiving widespread condemnation and criticism for continuing 100% cargo examination despite the purchase of cargo scanners.

The Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) officers are suspected of sabotaging the scanners, which have been abandoned at the country’s seaports for more than a year. Yesterday, the scanners were officially launched by Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, minister of finance, budget, and national planning.

Speaking at the commissioning of the three new scanners, Ahmed thanked the Federal Executive Council (FEC) for approving the purchase, installation, and training of 120 service officers as well as the approval of the scanners.

However, she asserted that the project would undoubtedly help the NCS carry out its mandates, in keeping with the Administration led by President Muhammadu Buhari‘s top priorities of eradicating poverty and fostering favorable macroeconomic conditions for long-term growth and development.

She asserts that the scanner has the ability to find illegal imports concealed in cargoes and that it allows for the scanning of more cargoes while achieving the desired efficiency and effectiveness in the cargo examination procedures.

“The commissioning of these three non-intrusive scanners is in line with efforts to expedite Customs operations and achieve its mandate of ease of doing business, trade facilitation and preventing port congestion.”

“These three scanners will help increase revenue for government and improve national security. It will also help enhance the remote audit trail of goods within the port system,” she said.

She implored the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), port terminal operators and all stakeholders in the port to cooperate with NCS to take full advantage of the scanners, saying the equipment have the capacity to process up to 500 containers in a day.

Earlier, the Comptroller General Customs, Col. Hameed Ali (Rtd), explained that the scanners commissioned were an intervention pending the start of the Customs modernisation project, which will deploy 135 scanners.

Ali stated that by 2023, scanners would be installed throughout Nigeria as part of the current administration’s reform strategy.

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Nigeria, China to Collaborate on Movie Production

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The Chinese Ambassador to Nigeria, Cui Jinachun, has called for a collaboration between the Nigerian movie industry and China film industry.

The Chinese Ambassador who made the statement at the opening of the Fourth Asian Film Festival and movie screening in Abuja noted that such would promote harmony, peace and unity between both countries. 

According to the ambassador, Nigeria is important to Africa and the Nollywood movie industry had taken the lead with a huge potential of driving a movie partnership between Africa and Asia. 

Investors King understands that this is not the first time both countries will call for such collaboration. 

Envoys from both countries have hinted at a possible collaboration in that regard. 

In July 2022, the Nigerian Consul General in China, H. E. Chimezie Okeoma Ogu sought a partnership between the Federal Government of Nigeria and the government of the People’s Republic of China in the areas of film production. 

Chimezie positioned that such collaboration will not only enhance the relationship, it will also give room to knowledge transfer and provision of hi-tech resolution equipment in the African entertainment industry. 

The Consular added that Nigeria stands to benefit a lot from the partnership noting that the movie industry in Nigeria is rated as the third-largest globally, accounting for five percent of Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product, (GDP). 

Similarly, speaking during the opening of the Fourth Asian Film Festival and movie screening yesterday, the Chinese Ambassador also reiterated the benefits of the partnership. 

“You know in Asia we have 47 countries, in the African continent we have 54 countries, so we can work together to produce films for the harmony of the people, society and the nations,” he said. 

Speaking further, he added that Nigeria can take the lead owing to the large nature of the Nollywood industry. 

“Nigeria particularly leads in producing in the film industry, so I think this kind of factor will give a big push and big momentum to develop Nollywood” he concluded. 

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SPAR Nigeria Begins Black Friday Sales

SPAR to begin Black Friday sales on Friday, November 25, 2022

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SPAR Market, Nigeria’s leading supermarket and department store, has announced that its annual Black Friday Sales will begin on Friday, November 25, 2022. 

The company said in a statement that it expects this to be one of its biggest Black Friday events ever, thanks to the appointment of Nollywood actress Toyin Abraham as its Black Friday ambassador.

“This year, SPAR offers massive offers up to 70% off in electronics, home appliances, mobile phones, computers, wines and spirits, groceries, clothing, watches, furniture, and more,” it said.

“Spar market has also organised several engaging games for their customers to win amazing prizes at all their stores nationwide.”

The SPAR license for Nigeria was granted to the Artee Group, a leading retail operator in Lagos, in 2009.  SPAR’s presence in Nigeria has grown steadily over the years. The partner assessed the market potential and developed the brand through a combination of new build and conversion stores, establishing brand recognition among shoppers and local entrepreneurs capable of supplying local products to this organized retail network.

SPAR is the world’s largest voluntary food retail chain. The company began with a single Dutch store in 1932 and has since expanded to over 13,600 locations in 48 countries across four continents.  SPAR’s growth has been supported by a set of values that have guided the organization since its inception 90 years ago. At the heart of these core values is the commitment of SPAR independent entrepreneurs to collaborate in all areas of wholesale and retail to ensure we serve our local communities with passion while being authentic in everything we do.

The story of SPAR in its early years is the story of its founder, Adriaan van Well, an innovative Dutch wholesaler with a clear vision for SPAR’s future. He was inspired by a simple yet powerful philosophy based on the concept of voluntary retailing: independent wholesalers and retailers can achieve more by working together than by working alone. SPAR’s philosophy today is based on the vision of benefiting from collaboration by pooling resources and scale.

Investors King will keep you updated on future Black Friday sales. 

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