EU gas tender results show market works well: Efet

  • Spanish Market: Natural gas
  • 19/06/23

The EU joint gas purchase platform AggregateEU, was "useful" to demonstrate that the "market was already delivering pretty well amongst active participants", EU energy traders association Efet's gas committee chair, Doug Wood, told Argus on the sidelines of the ETCSEE conference in Vienna last week.

Based on feedback that Efet received from its members that participated in the tender, "they have only been matched or connected with people they were already talking to", Wood said, adding that it remains to be seen "whether any additional deals have been done through the platform that would not have happened anyway".

Wood also expressed hope that the European Commission will publish some analysis to see whether the prices are actually higher or lower than prices struck on exchanges and through broker platforms.

And according to Wood, the commission is now seeking to focus on bringing large industrial users into the market.

While there was a period when a lot of trading activity collapsed into the most short-term contracts, Wood believes that this tendency is now moving back into the opposite direction. "I think what we see now, in the LNG market in particular, is portfolio players who are taking some long-term price risks", as there will be a market somewhere for that gas in the longer term, whether if it is in Europe or elsewhere, he said.

Russian gas phase-out requires time

With some long-term contracts between European firms and Russia's state-controlled firm Gazprom still in place, it would be "difficult" to see how a Russian gas phase-out can be achieved completely in the short term, Wood told Argus, adding that Europe still receives significant volumes of LNG from Russia.

Wood expects an increasing move away from Russian gas, but still sees a few challenges to overcome. There are greater prospects from 2026 because of the possibility of a significant increase in LNG volumes available to the market, he argued.

Wood stressed that while there are "hopeful" developments with central and south eastern European countries taking advantage of improved interconnection capacity and looking to access market supplies and diversify their sources, "political will, governmental support and the development of good regulation in this region, these all are slow at the moment".

The urgency of the situation "has caused a rethink" and there are "good" reasons for countries to adopt a more "open approach", according to Wood.

The association also expects "much less harm to overcome" if the transit agreement between Ukraine and Russia is not extended beyond 2024. "There was a huge financial impact because transit revenues are a very important contributor to the Ukrainian economy, but that has largely gone now", Wood said, adding that the volumes coming to Europe through that route are now relatively small compared with the size of the energy market.

Europe now has "better experience" of reverse flows, including along the Trans-Balkan pipeline, which introduces a new route to ship gas to Ukraine. And countries that previously received supply through the Ukrainian route "can increasingly be served from their western interconnections", he concluded.


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25/04/24

India’s Gail to shut Dabhol LNG terminal for monsoon

India’s Gail to shut Dabhol LNG terminal for monsoon

Mumbai, 25 April (Argus) — Indian state-controlled gas distributor Gail is planning to shut its 5mn t/yr Dabhol LNG terminal on the west coast from 15 May, ahead of monsoon rains. Gail will also stop importing LNG from mid-May at the terminal, a company official told Argus . This is because of the lack of a breakwater facility at the terminal, which prevents it from anchoring ships in turbulent seas. The breakwater facility was expected to be completed in January, but the cause of the delay is unknown. The terminal is likely to resume operations from the end of September, similar to its plans in 2023 , as this shutdown over the monsoon season is routine. Gail is set to receive a total of 139,635t LNG at the Dabhol terminal in May, which will arrive in two separate shipments from the US' 5.75mn t/yr Cove Point export facility. Both cargoes will be the last that the terminal will receive before it shuts in mid-May. It has received 583,326t of LNG at the terminal since the beginning of the year, lower by 4pc on the year, data from market analytics firm Kpler show. The Dabhol terminal only receives about 2.9mn t/yr of LNG, despite having a nameplate capacity of 5mn t/yr, because it is not used during the monsoon season. Gail intends to gradually increase the capacity of the Dabhol terminal to 12mn t/yr by April 2030–March 2031. By Rituparna Ghosh Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

EU adopts sustainability due diligence rules


24/04/24
24/04/24

EU adopts sustainability due diligence rules

Brussels, 24 April (Argus) — The European parliament has formally approved a Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive (CSDDD), which will require large EU companies to make "best efforts" for climate change mitigation. The law will mean that relevant companies will have to adopt a transition plan to make their business model compatible with the 1.5°C temperature limit set by the Paris climate agreement. It will apply to EU firms with over 1,000 employees and turnover above €450mn ($481mn). It will also apply to some companies with franchising or licensing agreements in the EU. The directive requires transposition into different EU national laws. It obliges member states to ensure relevant firms adopt and put into effect a transition plan for climate change mitigation. Transition plans must aim to "ensure, through best efforts" that business models and company strategies are compatible with transition to a sustainable economy, limiting global warming to 1.5°C and achieving climate neutrality by 2050. Where "relevant", the plans should limit "exposure of the company to coal-, oil- and gas-related activities". Despite a provisional agreement, EU states initially failed to formally approve the provisional agreement reached with parliament in December, after some member states blocked the deal. Parliament's adoption — at its last session before breaking for EU elections — paves the way for entry into force later in the year. Industry has obtained clarification, in the non-legal introduction, that the directive's requirements are an "obligation of means and not of results" with "due account" being given to progress that firms make as well as the "complexity and evolving" nature of climate transitioning. Still, firms' climate transition plans need to contain "time-bound" targets for 2030 and in five-year intervals until 2050 based on "conclusive scientific" evidence and, where appropriate, absolute reduction targets for greenhouse gas (GHG) for direct scope 1 emissions as well as scope 2 and scope 3 emissions. Scope 1 refers to emissions directly stemming from an organisation's activity, while scope 2 refers to indirect emissions from purchased energy. Scope 3 refers to end-use emissions. "It is alarming to see how member states weakened the law in the final negotiations. And the law lacks an effective mechanism to force companies to reduce their climate emissions," said Paul de Clerck, campaigner at non-governmental organisation Friends of the Earth Europe, pointing to "gaping" loopholes in the adopted text. By Dafydd ab Iago Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

Libya eyes progress on Eni-led oil and gas project


24/04/24
24/04/24

Libya eyes progress on Eni-led oil and gas project

London, 24 April (Argus) — Libya intends to move ahead with a $4bn-5bn oil and gas project proposed by Eni, months after putting the project on hold because of widespread opposition. The country's Supreme Council for Energy last month essentially cleared the way for block NC-07 to be awarded to a consortium of Italy's Eni, France's TotalEnergies, Abu Dhabi's Adnoc and Turkey's state-owned Turkish Energy after a technical review found Libyan institutions lacked the financial means to develop the project alone, according to leaked minutes of the meeting seen by Argus . More recently, Turkey's energy minister Alparslan Bayraktar said on 19 April that an agreement on NC-07 was close. "We are about to sign," he said. On 16 April, Libya's acting oil minister Khalifa Rajab Abdulsadek signalled the project was still on the cards. Eni did not comment. State-owned NOC could not be reached. Tripoli-based prime minister Abdelhamid Dbeibeh and NOC had been on the cusp of awarding NC-07 to the Eni-led consortium in January before widespread opposition forced Dbeibeh to order a review addressing concerns . Plans envisage at least 200mn ft³/d of gas and an unspecified amount of oil. The moves reflect a growing impetus by Libya's oil leadership to drive forward long-delayed projects as it seeks to boost oil production capacity from 1.2mn-1.3mn b/d to 2mn b/d and double gas output to around 3.5bn ft³/d over the next three to five years. Libya is also set to begin negotiations with TotalEnergies and ConocoPhillips in Paris next month over their demand for better terms at Waha Oil Company in return for investing in expanding production capacity, an oil industry source told Argus . This is also likely to prove controversial as many in the industry and beyond are opposed to altering contractual terms. The apparent fresh push comes just weeks after the ousting of oil minister Mohamed Oun , who had opposed awarding NC-07 to the consortium and rejected several other oil and gas deals pursued by the Tripoli-based government and NOC. Opponents of the deal have said that the consortium was set to receive a share of production that is too high and that current operator state-owned Agoco could develop the field for a fraction of the cost. The oil ministry under Oun had also suggested that NC-07 could have been put to a public tender rather than be the subject of direct negotiations. Proponents of the NC-07 deal said Libya must rapidly move ahead with projects to ensure domestic demand is met and the country can continue to export gas. The Supreme Council for Energy said Libya will face a severe gas shortage by 2026 on its current trajectory and become a gas importer unless development projects are implemented. While Libya's political divisions persist, its oil sector has enjoyed a greater level of stability over the past two years. Forced production shutdowns have been few and far between while interest from international oil companies has grown. But accusations of improper conduct in the oil industry have increased in tandem. One of the key challenges facing Libya's oil sector is project implementation. A landmark $8bn deal for Eni to develop offshore gas fields was signed in early 2023, but Argus understands that there has been little progress on implementation. By Aydin Calik Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

Oman latest to insist that oil, gas is 'here to stay'


24/04/24
24/04/24

Oman latest to insist that oil, gas is 'here to stay'

Muscat, 24 April (Argus) — Omani and Oman-focused energy officials this week joined a growing chorus of voices to reiterate the pivotal role that hydrocarbons have in the energy mix, even as state-owned companies scramble to increase their share of renewables production. Some producers cite the risk of leaving costly, stranded oil and gas assets as renewable energy alternatives become more favoured. "This is a common concern among producers who are focusing on short-term developments to maximize cash flow — [but] if we continue to do that, with the clean energy transition, will we be left with stranded assets in the long-term", state-controlled PDO's technical director Sami Baqi told the Oman Petroleum and Crude Show conference in Muscat this week. "We need to redefine and revamp our operation model to produce in a sustainable manner." "We are in an era where most of the production does not come from the easy oil but comes from difficult oil," Oman's energy ministry undersecretary Mohsin Al Hadhrami said. "It requires more improved and enhanced oil recovery (EOR) type technologies to extract it." Oman is heavily reliant on tertiary extraction technologies like EOR given its maturing asset base and complicated geology. "We know that most of the oil fields [in the region] are maturing and costs are going to escalate, so we need to be mindful of it while discussing cleaner solutions going forward," Hadhrami said. PDO, Oman's largest hydrocarbon producer, aims for 19pc of its output to come from EOR projects by 2025, and has said it is looking at 'cleaner' ways to implement the technology. PDO in November started a pilot project to inject captured CO2 for EOR at its oil reservoirs. Baqi's concerns were echoed by PDO's carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS) manager Nabil Al-Bulushi, who said even solutions like CCUS can be expensive and come with their own challenges. There is a need for a proper ecosystem or regulatory policies to avoid delays in executing such projects, he said. When it comes to challenges associated with commercialising green hydrogen, Saudi state-controlled Aramco's head of upstream Yousef Al-Tahan said higher costs already make hydrogen more expensive than any other energy sources. "Not only should the costs go down, but the market has to be matured to take in the hydrogen," he said. "We also need pipelines and facilities that are able to handle hydrogen, especially when it gets converted to ammonia." Gas here to stay Oman, like many of its neighbors in the Mideast Gulf, insists gas needs to be part of the global journey towards cleaner energies. "Asia-Pacific is still heavily reliant on coal, this is an area where gas can play an important role," Shell Oman's development manager Salim Al Amri said at the event. "I think there is no doubt that gas is here to stay." Oman is a particularly interesting case as it "has moved from a position of gas shortage to surplus", Al Amri said, enabled by key developments in tight gas. "Output from fields like Khazzan and Mabrouk will continue to produce nearly 50pc of output even by 2025, which is indicative of how important tight gas developments are," he said. The Khazzan tight gas field has 10.5 trillion ft³ of recoverable gas reserves. Mabrouk North East is due to reach 500mn ft³/d by mid-2024. But even as natural gas is touted as the transition fuel, executives from major producers like state-owned OQ and PDO warned there are technical risks associated with extracting the fuel, including encountering complex tight reservoirs, water production and difficult geology. By Rithika Krishna Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

Australia’s Woodside pledges extra domestic gas in 2025


24/04/24
24/04/24

Australia’s Woodside pledges extra domestic gas in 2025

Sydney, 24 April (Argus) — Australian independent Woodside Energy has promised to increase gas flows to domestic customers with a predicted national shortfall. The firm promises to make an extra 32PJ (854mn m³) available to the Western Australia (WA) domestic market by the end of 2025, Woodside chief executive Meg O'Neill said at its annual meeting in Perth on 24 April, following criticism of the state's LNG projects' contribution to WA supplies . Woodside produced 76PJ for the WA market in 2023. The company has initiated an expression of interest process for an additional 50PJ of gas from its Bass Strait fields offshore Victoria state for supply in 2025 and 2026 when a tight market is expected for east Australia . Woodside also said its Sangomar oil project offshore Senegal is 96pc complete with 19 of 23 initial wells complete. WA's Scarborough project is 62pc complete with trunkline installation and well drilling having started in the offshore Carnarvon basin. It last month awarded the sub-sea marine installation contract for its 100,000 b/d Trion project offshore Mexico, which is targeting its first oil in 2028. Woodside's 2023 operating revenue was $14bn , resulting in a profit of $1.7bn. Climate tensions Woodside's climate transition action plan saw 58.36pc opposition from shareholders at the annual meeting but is non-binding on the company. Woodside's 2021 climate report also faced significant opposition with 48.97pc voting against its adoption. The company did not put its 2022 climate report up for vote at last year's annual meeting. Its new emissions abatement target aims to reduce Woodside's customers' scope 1 and 2 emissions by 5mn t/yr by 2030, along with a $5bn investment in new energy projects by the same date. Net equity scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions rose to 5.53mn t carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) in 2023 from 4.61mn t CO2e in 2022 because of its merger with BHP Petroleum in mid-2022. Several major institutional shareholders including large domestic and international pension funds had already flagged their vote against Woodside's climate report, citing an insufficient urgency to reduce the firm's emissions. By Tom Major Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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