Natural Gas Daily: December 21st, 2020
Saudi Aramco's increased involvement in Russian energy projects is "under active consideration," Russian deputy prime minister Alexander Novak said in a government statement published on December 20.
- Saudi Arabia has expressed interest in investing in key Russian energy projects and companies in recent years, but no deals have been finalised.
- Aramco had been eyeing a stake in Novatek's Arctic LNG-2 project but the pair failed to reach an agreement and the Russian company brought on board France's Total and Chinese and Japanese partners instead.
Russia's biggest LNG exporter Novatek announced on December 18 that its board had approved an increase in minimum dividends from 30% to 50% of adjusted net profit, citing the company's strong operating and financial results as justification.
Novatek's largest shareholders are CEO Leonid Mikhelson with 24.8%, board member Gennady Timchenko with 23.5%, France's Total with 16.5% and Russia's Gazprom with 10%, according to its latest quarterly report.
Shell expects to incur another adjusted loss from its upstream business in the fourth quarter because of weak prices, the Anglo-Dutch major said in an earnings update.
Shell has agreed to sell a 26.25% interest in the Queensland Curtis LNG (QCLNG) common facilities to Global Infrastructure Partners Australia for US$2.5bn, the company said.
Chinese state-run Sinopec’s operating gas volumes in the year up to December 9 totalled 41.5bn m3, up 14% yr/yr, the company said on December 18.
- The company said it had purchased 18bn m3 of domestic onshore gas this year and had seen its LNG imports rise 18.6% yr/yr to 16.44mn metric tons.
- Sinopec stated that its Qingdao and Tianjin LNG receiving terminals had been operating at full load capacity during the period.
South African state oil company Sasol has struck a deal to sell its 49% stake in Central Termica de Ressano Garcia, Mozambique's first permanent large-scale gas-fired power plant, it announced.
- The company is looking to shore up its financial position with billions of dollars of divestments.
- It closed the sale of a 50% stake in three plants at its Louisiana petrochemicals complex to LyondellBasell in early December. The company also agreed on the sale of a minority share in a gas-to-liquids plant in Nigeria to Chevron in July, and is seeking buyers for its 50% position at a pipeline that supplies South Africa with gas from Mozambique.
Italy's Eni and Thailand's PTTEP have been awarded a concession for the UAE's offshore block 3 and will invest some dirhams 1.51bn ($412mn) in exploration, Abu Dhabi's national oil company Adnoc reported.
Adnoc earlier this month awarded a block concession to US-based Occidental following the company's latest bidding round, which kicked off in May last year. The company claims the acreage it is offering holds billions of barrels of oil and trillions of cubic feet of gas.
- Eni and PTTEP secured offshore blocks 1 and 2 in January last year, and the Italian major also won some acreage onshore Sharjah that month.