LONDON (Reuters) - Energy giants such as Royal Dutch Shell and Total are looking to build terminals and power plants in new markets to soak up the industry's rapidly burgeoning supply.
Companies have invested billions in plants to produce liquefied natural gas (LNG) in places such as Australia and the United States.
But gas demand growth is slowing, prices are down and the LNG volumes companies are set to produce will exceed those even major buyers such as China and Japan can absorb.
That has turned attention to the downstream market and opportunities to create new markets from Ivory Coast to remote Indonesian islands by building gas-fired power plants, pipelines, regasification and storage terminals.
"We are ready to go downstream as much as it takes to unlock gas demand," said Laurent Vivier, president for the gas division at Total. "We need to be present in downstream ourselves, to create demand and unlock bottlenecks along the chain including regasification, pipelines and power plants." Total aims to triple the number of its gas and power markets and raise its annual LNG output to 20 million tonnes and its trading to 15 million tonnes by 2020.
The company is taking part in LNG infrastructure tenders, including several gas-fired power plants, in countries including Indonesia, Chile, Ivory Coast, Ghana and Morocco, Vivier said.
Shell believes the number of markets buying LNG could double, according to its chief financial officer, Simon Henry.
"From around 20 to 30 ...we can see potential for
around 50 different markets if you look out to 2030," Henry said.
"Our aim is to capture the best share of those who are looking now to
start or grow." The focus on
downstream mimics a model that companies such as Shell, Total, Exxon Mobil
But some analysts question how easily that model can be reproduced.
"Whether they succeed in this is another story, whether they have the mindset for this type of work is also another story," said Thierry Bros, senior gas analyst at French bank Societe Generale.
"It will be a painful test for these companies who are not that experienced in building small downstream demand," he said.
New technologies are helping speed development, with floating terminals, for example, offering a cheaper alternative to onshore units that cost more than $1 billion.
"We are looking at multiple markets around the world in terms of potential to regas," said Shell's Henry. "Quite a lot of it is floating regasification because it is quick and you can develop (a market) in stages."
Shell, the world's top LNG trader after buying BG Group, expects to produce around 30 million tonnes of LNG this year and trade nearly 50 million tonnes, accounting for about a sixth of global trading volume.
Global output capacity is expected to rise by half by 2020, potentially adding some 150 million tonnes of LNG to the market.
However, overall gas demand growth is expected to slow to 1.5 percent a year to 2021 from the 2.5 percent rate seen recently, the International Energy Agency has forecast.
In step with oil and gas, LNG prices have also struggled in the last two years. That has prompted traders to offer more single cargoes for immediate delivery on the spot market, making it easier for smaller buyers to find supply.
By Ron Bousso and Oleg Vukmanovic
(Editing by Jason Neely)
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Oil and gas sector is one of the most lucrative sectors for job seekers from industries all over the world. It offers great salaries and benefits packages and an opportunity to travel and work overseas. Due to its high demand, scammers are preying on the vulnerable oil and gas workers. To ensure you don’t fall prey to their mischievous tactics, we would recommend reading our guideline below:
How does scamming occur?
The scammer poses as an employer or recruiter of an oil and gas company or he may claim to be an employee or recruiter for a job consultancy firm catering to the oil and gas industry. They offer irresistible employment opportunities and often demand money in advance to conduct further processes. Money is often demanded on the pretext of work visas, travel expenses, background or credit checks that the job requires.
What do scammers want from you?
It is important to understand what the scammer's agenda is so that it helps you shield yourself from getting conned:
To extract money: On the pretext of getting you a job in the energy sector employing any of the tactics mentioned above
For identity theft: scammers look for valid identity of people and ask for confidential personal details including bank details to commit fraud through your name or to withdraw money from your account.
Whatever be their modus operandi, their goal is to either separate you from your cash or accomplish an identity theft. The bigger problem is, the scammers are getting better at their game and coming up with innovative ideas to lure innocent job seekers. In oil and gas industry, the scammers are targeting the job seekers from overseas, immigrants or contractors as they feel it is easier to attract them on the pretext of work permits, high salaries, paid travel, better lifestyle in the first world countries.
How to spot a job scam and keep yourself secure?
There is always a difference between real and fake, all you need to do is be watchful to notice the underlying discrepancies. There is a pattern that scammers usually follows, which is discussed below. Make sure you watch out for these red flags when you receive any job offer next time:
Free email provider - No legitimate hiring agency or company will use the services of free email provider like Gmail, Hotmail, or Yahoo. So, if you are receiving an email or have been requested to share your details on emails that use free email services, then be extremely cautious. The scammers try to trick the job seekers by using an email address that looks authentic for instance: [email protected]. It is important to notice here that the ‘xyz’ part of the email ID is usually a gmail, yahoo, etc. which is a free email address. A legitimate job provider would never use.
Fake or new company name - If company name or oil and gas recruitment agency name is mentioned along with the free email id, then do a quick search on the company. Verify its existence and contact them via official email address and contact numbers mentioned on the website. Check their social media presence too. If the website and social media page look new while the company claims to be in business for a substantial amount of time, know for sure that there is something fishy.
Bad grammar and confusing job details - The scammers usually do not pay much attention to structure the mail. You can spot grammatical errors and even the job descriptions are not explained well or is completely different than your skillset and experience. Any authentic mail from a company or oil and gas recruitment agency will ensure an error-free, concise, and clear communication
Fee to conduct a job interview - No legitimate oil and gas company or recruitment agency will ever ask for money to conduct a job interview or to apply to job positions. If the mail says, the money will be refunded once you appear for a job interview, then please do not trust such claims as it is always bogus.
Asking for confidential personal information - Anyone asking for information that you will never put on CV, is a warning sign. It includes your bank details, passport copy, identity cards, your current residential details and so on. No genuine company will ever ask for such details before you sign the offer letter. If by chance, you have shared your bank details or another confidential detail to the scammer, contact your bank and email service provider and register a complaint against it.
Unknown source - There are countries who have strict spam rules and until you subscribe or give consent to the company, they cannot send you emails. So, if you receive an email from a company you haven’t contacted or have not applied for jobs, then be cautious it might be a scam.
The principle on which scammers operate is “Too good to be true”. Don’t entertain any job offer that offers a position, you are not qualified for or offers a salary which is unrealistically high. In the oil and gas sector, be careful not to reveal your passport/work visa details to the scammer. Remember, if you find anything which is way beyond the realistic expectations, then trust your instincts and drop the offer and do not respond.
See our infographic below for a quick summarized glance -
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Searching for the right talent is often a tedious chore for the HR. However, with technological improvements, the usage of app-based recruitment has increased manifold. Recruiters and job seekers are increasingly adopting this new method. A mobile application simplifies the labor-intensive and time-consuming recruitment task and comes loaded with features that help to automate the recruitment cycle. For all the good, app-based approach can do, it still comes under fire from the critics. Here's our take on the pros & cons of App-based talent search.