Producers to reap windfall as LNG price soars

Original article by Perry Williams
The Australian – Page: 17 : 11-Jan-21

Australia’s revenue from LNG exports is likely to rise strongly after a surge in demand for LNG in Asia boosted the price of the commodity. Industry sources have stated that a Japanese utility has paid $US37 per million British thermal units for an LNG shipment from the Gorgon project in Western Australia. The benchmark for LNG spot prices in North Asia also recently rose to $US20.70 per mbtu, compared with just $US2 per mbtu in June. Cold weather in Asia has been the key driver of the surge in demand for LNG.

CORPORATES

Santos sticks to gas, earmarking $1bn for Narrabri development

Original article by Perry Williams
The Australian – Page: 16 : 2-Dec-20

Santos CEO Kevin Gallagher says the oil and gas producer will not diversify into renewable energy or electricity generation. He contends that global demand for fuels will remain strong for a long time, while gas will play a major role in reducing carbon emissions over coming decades. Meanwhile, Santos expects to make a final investment decision on its Narrabri gas project in the first half of 2023, with the first phase of its development slated to cost $US650m. Santos has also advised that its Barossa LNG project will cost significantly less to develop than initially forecast.

CORPORATES
SANTOS LIMITED – ASX STO

China fallout hits Woodside gas sale plan

Original article by Angela Macdonald-Smith
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 14 & 18 : 12-Nov-20

Woodside Petroleum CEO Peter Coleman says potential Chinese investors have abandoned talks to acquire a stake in Scarborough gas project due to the growing trade tensions between Australia and China. He adds that this contributed to Woodside’s decision to drop plans to reduce its stake in the Scarborough project and focus on selling a stake in the Pluto-2 project. Coleman has stressed that relations between Woodside and its existing Chinese customers and partners remain strong.

CORPORATES
WOODSIDE PETROLEUM LIMITED – ASX WPL

Forrest to drive gas import terminal

Original article by Perry Williams
The Australian – Page: 15 : 30-Oct-20

Mining magnate Andrew Forrest is set to proceed with a proposed LNG import terminal at Port Kembla in New South Wales. Sources have indicated that Forrest’s private company Squadron Energy is close to finalising a long-term lease at Port Kembla. Squadron recently bought out its Japanese partners in the project, and it has previously indicated that construction work could start by the end of 2020. A number of other LNG import projects have been proposed to address gas supply concerns in Australia’s eastern states.

CORPORATES
SQUADRON ENERGY PTY LTD

More may exit NW Shelf, Woodside warns

Original article by Perry Williams
The Australian – Page: 13 & 17 : 25-Jun-20

Woodside Petroleum director Ann Pickard says the North West Shelf joint venture worked very well at first, but the competing interests of the six partners have progressively gotten in the way. She says other partners could opt to join Chevron in selling out of the LNG venture, given that the NWS plant is set to begin processing third-party gas as the project’s reserves run down. Former Woodside CEO Don Voelte says Shell and BP could potentially sell their NWS stakes.

CORPORATES
WOODSIDE PETROLEUM LIMITED – ASX WPL, NORTH WEST SHELF LNG PTY LTD, CHEVRON CORPORATION, BP PLC, ROYAL DUTCH SHELL PLC

NW Shelf shake-up looming

Original article by Perry Williams
The Weekend Australian – Page: 21 & 22 : 20-Jun-20

Former Woodside Petroleum CEO Don Voelte says a new model for the $34 billion North West Shelf LNG plant that would see it process gas for other firms may not suit some of its current owners. Woodside is one of six joint-venture partners who own the plant, but Chevron has decided to sell out of the plant, and BP and Shell could follow suit. Voelte says he would not surprised to see more selling of assets by major oil firms; he notes that Exxon is currently trying to sell its interest in the Bass Strait assets. He says asset sales have always been part of the majors’ strategy, but they would not get as much now as they would now.

CORPORATES
WOODSIDE PETROLEUM LIMITED – ASX WPL, CHEVRON CORPORATION, BP PLC, ROYAL DUTCH SHELL PLC, EXXON CORPORATION, BHP GROUP LIMITED – ASX BHP

Santos warns of sovereign risk in energy sector

Original article by Perry Williams
The Australian – Page: 16 : 20-May-20

Santos CEO Kevin Gallagher has stressed the need for Australia to create the ‘right investment environment’ to attract new capital in the post-coronavirus world. He has urged governments to ensure a free market environment for the nation’s energy producers so they are globally competitive. Gallagher has also expressed concern that increased sovereign risk in Australia has contributed to moves by major international producers to divest their local assets.

CORPORATES
SANTOS LIMITED – ASX STO

Our global LNG leadership is under threat

Original article by Dennis Shanahan
The Australian – Page: 4 : 8-May-20

A report from Wood Mackenzie has warned that the nation’s status as the world’s biggest LNG exporter is at risk. The report, which was produced on behalf of the Australian Petroleum Production & Exploration Association, notes that increased regulation, the downturn in the oil price and growing international competition in the sector are among the threats facing the local industry. Wood Mackenzie adds that any changes to the LNG industry’s tax regime could deter future investment in the sector.

CORPORATES
WOOD MACKENZIE, AUSTRALIAN PETROLEUM PRODUCTION AND EXPLORATION ASSOCIATION LIMITED

Energy companies face huge asset writedowns

Original article by Perry Williams
The Australian – Page: 13 & 14 : 20-Apr-20

The price of Brent crude oil is trading at around $US28 a barrel. Energy industry sources have warned that Australian oil and gas producers may have to announce significant full or half-year impairment charges if the oil price remains subdued for the remainder of 2020. Allan Gray Australia Simon Mawhinney says $U30 a barrel is not sustainable for the industry. Futures market pricing suggests that the long-run oil price may average $US44 a barrel until 2023.

CORPORATES
WOODSIDE PETROLEUM LIMITED – ASX WPL, SANTOS LIMITED – ASX STO, OIL SEARCH LIMITED – ASX OSH, BEACH ENERGY LIMITED – ASX BPT, ALLAN GRAY AUSTRALIA PTY LTD

Oil Search eyes $1bn raising

Original article by Perry Williams
The Australian – Page: 16 : 7-Apr-20

Shares in Oil Search have been placed in a trading halt until 14 April, pending an announcement regarding a capital raising. The oil and gas producer is expected to raise at least $1bn to strengthen its balance sheet in the wake of a sharp fall in the crude oil price. The slump has weighed on Oil Search’s shares, which have fallen in value from more than $7 at the start of 2020 to just $2.73, reducing its market capitalisation to $3.89bn. The new shares may offered at around $2 apiece.

CORPORATES
OIL SEARCH LIMITED – ASX OSH