Maersk Drilling has won a deepwater drilling contract from Aker Energy to provide drilling services at the Pecan-4A appraisal well located offshore Ghana.
Maersk Drilling will employ its ultra-deepwater drillship, Maersk Viking, under the contract.
The scope of the contract includes drilling of one firm well, with options for two additional wells.
Maersk Drilling is a Danish offshore drilling rig operator, while Aker Energy is an offshore operator of oil and gas properties based in Ghana.
Adnoc LNG has awarded an AED3.16bn ($860m) contract to a consortium of Tecnicas Reunidas and Target Engineering Construction Company to provide engineering, procurement and construction services for the next phase of the Integrated Gas Development Expansion project.
The scope of the contract also includes equipment and material supply, testing and commissioning services and other auxiliary services.
Adnoc LNG is a UAE-based subsidiary of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company, while Técnicas Reunidas is a Spanish general contractor. Target Engineering Construction Company is a UAE-based provider of oil and gas engineering, procurement and construction contractor services.
Four subsidiaries of Malaysia-based oil and gas services firm Sapura Energy have received three new offshore contracts along with extension of an existing contract.
The new contracts were awarded to Sapura Offshore, Sapura Fabrication and Normand Sapura, while the extension contract was awarded to Sapura Drilling.
The MYR815m ($197.4m) contracts were secured in Australia, Brunei, Malaysia and Nigeria.
Sapura Offshore was subcontracted by Saidel for the engineering and construction of the 16 in Southern SWAMP Sales Gas Evacuation pipeline located in the Delta Region of Nigeria for Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria.
Sapura Fabrication was awarded a five-year subcontract for providing maintenance, construction and modification services under the Pan Malaysia Integrated Offshore Installation Contract by ExxonMobil Exploration and Production Malaysia.
Normand Sapura was contracted to provide inspection and recovery services for the subsea structures of the East Spar Project located offshore Western Australia for Quadrant Energy.
Sapura Drilling was awarded an extension contract by Brunei Shell Petroleum to extend its services for the Sapura Pelaut semi-submersible tender assisted drilling rig.
Shell plans to divest its 22.5% working interest in the Caesar Tonga oilfield located offshore Mexico to Focus Oil.
The Caesar Tonga project involves the development of three separate discoveries located south of the Green Canyon in the Gulf of Mexico, US.
Shell is a Dutch diversified oil and gas company, while Focus Oil is a US-based oil and gas exploration company.
Jadestone Energy has announced that all the conditions required to acquire the Montara oil project, located offshore Australia, from PTT Exploration and Production (PTTEP) have been met.
The Montara oil project is located in the Timor Sea offshore Australia, approximately 690km west of Darwin, and includes three fields namely Montara, Skua and Swift/Swallow.
Jadestone Energy has entered an agreement to acquire a 100% stake in the Montara field and its associated assets located in the Commonwealth of Australia from PTTEP’s subsidiary, PTTEP Australasia (Ashmore Cartier), in July 2018 for $195m.
Based in Singapore, Jadestone Energy is an oil and gas production and development company, while PTT Exploration and Production is a Thai oil and gas exploration and production company.
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Headline crude prices for the week beginning 11 February 2019 – Brent: US$61/b; WTI: US$52/b
Headlines of the week
Midstream & Downstream
Global liquid fuels
Electricity, coal, renewables, and emissions
2018 was a year that started with crude prices at US$62/b and ended at US$46/b. In between those two points, prices had gently risen up to peak of US$80/b as the oil world worried about the impact of new American sanctions on Iran in September before crashing down in the last two months on a rising tide of American production. What did that mean for the financial health of the industry over the last quarter and last year?
Nothing negative, it appears. With the last of the financial results from supermajors released, the world’s largest oil firms reported strong profits for Q418 and blockbuster profits for the full year 2018. Despite the blip in prices, the efforts of the supermajors – along with the rest of the industry – to keep costs in check after being burnt by the 2015 crash has paid off.
ExxonMobil, for example, may have missed analyst expectations for 4Q18 revenue at US$71.9 billion, but reported a better-than-expected net profit of US$6 billion. The latter was down 28% y-o-y, but the Q417 figure included a one-off benefit related to then-implemented US tax reform. Full year net profit was even better – up 5.7% to US$20.8 billion as upstream production rose to 4.01 mmboe/d – allowing ExxonMobil to come close to reclaiming its title of the world’s most profitable oil company.
But for now, that title is still held by Shell, which managed to eclipse ExxonMobil with full year net profits of US$21.4 billion. That’s the best annual results for the Anglo-Dutch firm since 2014; product of the deep and painful cost-cutting measures implemented after. Shell’s gamble in purchasing the BG Group for US$53 billion – which sparked a spat of asset sales to pare down debt – has paid off, with contributions from LNG trading named as a strong contributor to financial performance. Shell’s upstream output for 2018 came in at 3.78 mmb/d and the company is also looking to follow in the footsteps of ExxonMobil, Chevron and BP in the Permian, where it admits its footprint is currently ‘a bit small’.
Shell’s fellow British firm BP also reported its highest profits since 2014, doubling its net profits for the full year 2018 on a 65% jump in 4Q18 profits. It completes a long recovery for the firm, which has struggled since the Deepwater Horizon disaster in 2010, allowing it to focus on the future – specifically US shale through the recent US$10.5 billion purchase of BHP’s Permian assets. Chevron, too, is focusing on onshore shale, as surging Permian output drove full year net profit up by 60.8% and 4Q18 net profit up by 19.9%. Chevron is also increasingly focusing on vertical integration again – to capture the full value of surging Texas crude by expanding its refining facilities in Texas, just as ExxonMobil is doing in Beaumont. French major Total’s figures may have been less impressive in percentage terms – but that it is coming from a higher 2017 base, when it outperformed its bigger supermajor cousins.
So, despite the year ending with crude prices in the doldrums, 2018 seems to be proof of Big Oil’s ability to better weather price downturns after years of discipline. Some of the control is loosening – major upstream investments have either been sanctioned or planned since 2018 – but there is still enough restraint left over to keep the oil industry in the black when trends turn sour.
Supermajor Net Profits for 4Q18 and 2018
- 4Q18 – Net profit US$6 billion (-28%);
- 2018 – Net profit US$20.8 (+5.7%)
- 4Q18 – Net profit US$5.69 billion (+32.3%);
- 2018 – Net profit US$21.4 billion (+36%)
- 4Q18 – Net profit US$3.73 billion (+19.9%);
- 2018 – Net profit US$14.8 billion (+60.8%)
- 4Q18 – Net profit US$3.48 billion (+65%);
- 2018 - Net profit US$12.7 billion (+105%)
- 4Q18 – Net profit US$3.88 billion (+16%);
- 2018 - Net profit US$13.6 billion (+28%)