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All the latest in Oil, Gas, Commodity news and analysis

U.S. Funds Set Sights On Venezuela Oil Investment
by Michael Kern
6 Jul 2022 at 9:00am
Two U.S. investment funds have formed a joint venture to invest in Venezuela's oil industry. The funds, Gramercy Funds Management and Amos Global Energy, will partner with a division of Inelectra Group, a Venezuela-based company, which has a stake in an oil project off the eastern coast of Venezuela, where oil was discovered in 2001, Reuters reported. The move may be a signal that the initial signs of thawing in Washington's relations with Caracas are now multiplying. Despite the fact that U.S. companies are only barred from doing business with?

Russian Court Suspends Caspian Pipeline Consortium Over Environmental Violations
by Charles Kennedy
6 Jul 2022 at 8:30am
A Russian regional court has suspended the activities of the Caspian Pipeline Consortium for 30 days on the grounds of environmental violations, Russian media are reporting. The violation was a spill that occurred during the loading of a Greek-flagged tanker last year at the port of Novorossiysk. The company attributed the accident to equipment problems and said, in response to the court ruling, that it was acting within the legal framework of the Russian Federation. It added it would appeal the decision. The Caspian Pipeline Consortium is the?

EU Considers Controversial ?Green Status? Proposal For Nuclear, Natural Gas
by Tsvetana Paraskova
6 Jul 2022 at 8:00am
The European Parliament did not block on Wednesday a European Commission proposal to include some natural gas and nuclear projects in the list of environmentally sustainable economic activities, paving the way for the EU to include such projects in its so-called ?green? investments. In a vote on Wednesday, most members of the European Parliament did not support a motion to block the Commission?s proposal. A total of 278 MEPs voted in favor of the resolution to block the proposal, 328 voted against, and 33 abstained. The vote failed?

OPEC Secretary-General Mohammed Barkindo Has Passed
by Charles Kennedy
6 Jul 2022 at 7:30am
The secretary-general of OPEC, Mohammed Barkindo, has died suddenly, the group chief executive officer of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation said. "We lost our esteemed Dr Muhammad Sanusi Barkindo. He died at about 11pm yesterday 5th July 2022. Certainly a great loss to his immediate family, the NNPC, our country Nigeria, the OPEC and the global energy community. Burial arrangements will be announced shortly," Mele Kyri said in a tweet. Before he became secretary-general of OPEC, Barkindo spent 24 years with the Nigerian National Petroleum?

Goldman Sachs Doubles 2023 European Natural Gas Price Target
by OilPrice.com
6 Jul 2022 at 7:00am
A few days ago, Deutsche Bank strategist Jim Reid asked if July 22 would be the most important day of the year for both Europe and the rest of the world, as that's the day when Russian gas should resume transit on the Nord Stream 1 pipeline, to wit: "while we all spend most of our market time thinking about the Fed and a recession, I suspect what happens to Russian gas in H2 is potentially an even bigger story. Of course, by July 22nd parts may have been found and the supply might start to normalize. Anyone who tells you they know what is going?

Austria Plans To Power Industry With Oil Instead Of Gas
by Julianne Geiger
5 Jul 2022 at 5:30pm
Austria's energy minister said it intends to order industry and utilities to switch from using natural gas as it looks to stockpile more natural gas to help insulate it from being cut off from Russian supplies, Reuters reported on Tuesday. Austria will encourage industry and utilities to use alternate fuels such as crude oil, Austrian energy minister Leonore Gewessler said. Austria gets 80% of its natural gas from Russia. And while its electricity is generated mostly from hydropower, its industrial sector and utilities, however, use a significant?

Are U.S. Gasoline Refiners Running Out Of Steam?
by Tsvetana Paraskova
5 Jul 2022 at 5:00pm
U.S. refineries have been operating at or near maximum utilization levels in recent weeks as demand recovers. Petroleum stocks are sitting at multi-year lows, and refining margins are sky-high. Refinery utilization at 95% is at its highest since before COVID?September 2019. Yet, refiners don?t have much room to safely raise capacity usage further, while the summer season with heat waves and hurricanes could suddenly take some capacity off the market, further straining gasoline supply and putting upward pressure on gasoline?

OPEC Secretary General: The Oil And Gas Industry Is Under Siege
by Julianne Geiger
5 Jul 2022 at 4:30pm
The oil and gas industry is "under siege" OPEC Secretary General Mohammad Barkindo said on Tuesday. After years of underinvestment on a global scale, the oil and gas industry is now "facing huge challenges along multiple fronts," the Secretary General told delegates at an industry conference in Lagos. "These threaten our investment potential now and in the long term, to put it bluntly, my dear friends, the oil and gas industry is under siege," Barkindo said, citing geopolitical developments in Europe. Barkindo also suggested that the supply shortage?

China Is Taking Advantage Of Western Sanctions On Russia
by Irina Slav
5 Jul 2022 at 4:00pm
When the Trump administration slapped sanctions on Venezuela and Iran, China became the largest buyer of these countries? crude oil despite repeated warnings by Washington officials?and not just warnings but action, too?that there is such a thing as secondary sanctions. Now, China has also become an even bigger buyer of oil from the world?s biggest exporter, incidentally the subject of not just U.S. but European Union sanctions, too. And while oil prices for most of the world are rising, for China, they are falling. Bloomberg?

Why Oil Prices Crashed By 10% Today
by Julianne Geiger
5 Jul 2022 at 3:31pm
Crude oil prices fell by nearly 7% on Tuesday as fears of a recession mount?a scenario that could put a dent in oil demand. The plummeting price action comes as Saudi Arabia announced a price hike for all its crude grades in August to its prized market, Asia. Saudi Arabia?s price hike comes mostly as expected by the market on strong refining margins and expectations of strong demand. But while Saudi Arabia lifted the August price for its flagship crude grade to Asia, Arab Light, by $2.80 per barrel, the price of Brent and WTI?

Oil And Gas Stocks Provide A Glimmer Of Light In A Dark Market
by Alex Kimani
5 Jul 2022 at 3:00pm
Oil and gas companies have emerged as the only bright spot in a deeply bearish U.S. stock market, thanks to soaring commodity prices fuelled by the war in Ukraine. The S&P 500 ended H1 2022 with a 20.6% fall, marking its worst H1 since 1970. A combination of factors caused the slump, including surging COVID-19 cases driven by the Omicron variant at the beginning of the year, followed by Russia's invasion of Ukraine in February, decades-high inflation, and aggressive interest rate hikes from the Federal Reserve. In sharp contrast, the?

Russia To Hit Gazprom With $20 Billion Windfall Tax
by Michael Kern
5 Jul 2022 at 2:30pm
Russia?s lower house of parliament approved on Tuesday amendments in the country?s tax code that would slap a windfall tax on Gazprom of the equivalent of $20 billion between September and November, which will boost Russia?s tax revenue income. The amendment still needs to be approved by the upper house of the Russian Parliament and President Vladimir Putin before becoming law. Under the plans, gas giant Gazprom will pay $6.5 billion (416 billion Russian rubles) per month for three months, on top of its other taxes.?

Is This The Most Promising Oil Discovery Hotspot On Earth?
by Matthew Smith
5 Jul 2022 at 2:00pm
ExxonMobil?s slew of major oil discoveries in offshore Guyana since 2015 has seen the deeply impoverished former British colony become a hotspot for offshore drilling activity. That has sparked considerable interest in the oil potential of neighboring Suriname. The one-time Dutch colony, which until July 2020 was embroiled in a series of scandals involving former President Desi Bouterse, shares the Guyana-Suriname Basin. That basin is the focal point of one of the world?s largest offshore drilling booms with recent discoveries pointing?

Britain To Slap New Sanctions On Belarus For Aiding Russian Invasion
by RFE/RL staff
5 Jul 2022 at 1:30pm
The British government says it will introduce a new round of economic, trade, and transport sanctions on Belarus and the regime of authoritarian ruler Alyaksandr Lukashenka. In a statement on July 4, the British Foreign Office said the package of sanctions "extends some of the significant measures made against Russia to Belarus." It said the new sanctions will be formally announced and take effect on July 5. Western governments have imposed financial sanctions on Russia to punish it for its unprovoked invasion of Ukraine. Belarus is not a direct?

Colombia?s Shale Oil Industry Is Increasingly Unappealing For Investors
by Matthew Smith
5 Jul 2022 at 1:00pm
A lack of major oil discoveries and meager proven reserves of 2 billion barrels saw Colombia look to hydraulic fracturing as a means of securing the future of its economically crucial hydrocarbon sector. While it is believed that the Andean country possesses considerable unconventional oil potential fracking is attracting considerable opposition from a wide cross-section of Colombian society. That opposition along with considerable uncertainty as to whether the national government can effectively regulate the controversial technique saw Colombia?s?

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