All posts by Tim Daiss

The Bad Gas Deal That Brought Down A Prime Minister

Embattled Papua New Guinea (PNG) Prime Minister Peter O’Neil resigned on Wednesday, putting the country’s LNG development and a preliminary deal with French oil and gas major Total in doubt. O’Neill drew criticism for his deal worth $13 billion with Total and U.S. oil major ExxonMobil to extract, pipe and ship liquefied natural gas (LNG) overseas from the South Pacific country.  After the signing of the deal, O’Neill’s government narrowly avoided a no-confidence vote by adjourning parliament for nearly a month. However, on…

Japan’s Iranian Oil imports Are Plunging

Preliminary data released on Thursday by Japan’s Ministry of Finance showed that the country’s crude oil imports from Iran dropped 42 percent month-on-month to 169,100 barrels per day (bpd) in April. The drop comes a month after its Iranian crude imports surged to 292,209 bpd. March’s surge came after the resumption of imports in February due to local refiners boosting purchases to meet term contractual requirements. February imports of Iranian crude were posted at 76,057 bpd, marking the first import of Iranian crude in four…

China’s Biggest Weapon In The Trade War

Oil markets remained under pressure in early trading on Wednesday amid economic downturn worries due to the U.S.-China trade war that shows no sign of ending. Front-month futures for international oil benchmark Brent crude hit $69.85/barrel at 0101 GMT, a drop of 0.4 percent from the close from the last session. U.S. oil benchmark West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were off some 0.7 percent, at $58.70/barrel. Ongoing trade war tensions are causing concern across financial markets as well. The S&P 500 has dropped 5 percent from its…

Peace And Oil: Trump’s Endgame In Saudi Arabia

By now, after two-and-a-half years in office, it’s obvious that President Trump’s relations with Riyadh are dictating his foreign policy, even at the expense of further enraging a Democratic-controlled Congress intent on removing him from office. Trump’s last pro-Saudi move came on Friday week the fire-brand president declared a national emergency because of tensions with Iran and swept aside objections from lawmakers to complete the sale of over $8 billion worth of weapons to Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Jordan.…

Oil Majors Are Missing The Renewable Boom In Asia

Renewables energy investment in Asia, excluding China, will bypass spending on upstream oil and gas projects in the region as soon as next year, research consultancy Rystad Energy said on Sunday. In 2020, total capex in renewables will overtake oil and gas exploration and production (E&P) spending, with contributions from Australia and other Asian countries, including Vietnam, Taiwan and South Korea. Gero Farruggio, Head of Renewables at Rystad Energy, said that “these countries each have strong pipelines for renewable energy developments…

Vietnam Is On The Verge Of An Energy Crisis

As the U.S. finds itself embroiled in a host of problems around the world, from trying to convince North Korea to come back to the bargaining table, to ramping up tensions with Iran, smoothing over differences in the decades long U.S.-Saudi alliance and hiking punishing tariffs on of $200 bn worth of Chinese goods from 10 percent to an economically damaging 25 percent, it is also at odds with Russia over its continued meddling in Ukraine, allegations of election interference in the U.S. and its support of the al-Assad regime in the ongoing Syrian…

Saudi Arabia Scrambles To Calm Oil Markets

Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest oil exporter, and de facto OPEC leader, is trying to calm global oil market jitters, and at least for now, it’s working. Saudi Arabia’s council of ministers said on Wednesday that the kingdom “will do everything in its power to prevent any war and its hand is always extended to peace,” adding the government was committed “to achieving balance in the (oil) market and working towards its stability on a sustainable basis.” The statement also came less than a day after the American Petroleum Institute (API)…

Japan Moves To Take Over The World’s Largest LNG Market

Japan, the world’s largest liquefied natural gas (LNG) exporter, has come a long way in just a few years in formulating an LNG markets playbook. The country has pivoted from being at the mercy of cost-intensive and restrictive long term LNG supply deals, mostly from Qatar, that even prevented the country from reselling the super-cooled fuel to now being both a secondary seller of the fuel as well as getting ready to build out LNG infrastructure in the Asia-Pacific region, which represents around two-thirds of global LNG demand, with that…

The Overlooked Factor That Could Send Oil To $50

It’s been almost three-and-a-half years since global oil prices dipped to precarious levels for major oil producing nations. Oil prices had plunged from more than $100 per barrel in mid-2014 to dipping below the $30/barrel price point by January 2016. At the time global oil markets were so saturated with the precious black commodity that OPEC de facto leader and the world’s largest oil exporter Saudi Arabia was experiencing severe fiscal pain. The Kingdom had to pass politically unpopular austerity measures, ran record budget deficits,…

Global Oil Shipping Concerns Rise Over Middle East Tensions

While global oil markets are accustomed to factoring geopolitical uncertainty into oil prices, this kind of geopolitical fallout hasn’t been seen for a number of years. The world’s largest oil exporter, that still along with its OPEC+ partners, plays the role of global oil markets swing producer, is seeing an escalation of attacks on its oil export infrastructure and shipping. Saudi Arabia said on Tuesday that armed drones had attacked two of its oil pumping stations. This came just two days after the sabotage of two oil tankers carrying…