Egypt to issue global tender to explore oil in Red Sea

Egypt’s Petroleum Ministry is in the process of issuing a global tender before the end of this year to explore petroleum wealth, including in the Red Sea. (Reuters)
Updated 11 March 2018
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Egypt to issue global tender to explore oil in Red Sea

CAIRO: Egypt’s Petroleum Ministry is in the process of issuing a global tender before the end of this year to explore petroleum wealth, including in the Red Sea.
The tender notice will be published for the exploration of petroleum products in oil reserves, including new sectors in the Red Sea, minister Tarek el-Molla was quoted by Egypt Today as saying.
Molla surveyed on Saturday the geophysical data collection process from Egypt's economic zone in the Red Sea.
The project is being implemented by an alliance between “Western Gecko – Schlumberger” and "TGS," with total investment worth $750 million.
The minister emphasized the project's importance in attracting global companies to carry drilling operations and make new discoveries.
South Valley Egyptian Holding Company would be enabled to offer international bids for oil exploration in Egypt's economic waters in the Red Sea, something that was not possible without the demarcation of the maritime border with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Molla clarified.
He stated that the companies have collected 95 percent of the data that was outlined in the project's plan and around 9,500 kilometers have been covered so far.


Brent oil rises back above $80 as Iran sanctions loom

Updated 42 min 56 sec ago
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Brent oil rises back above $80 as Iran sanctions loom

  • The US sanctions on the oil sector in Iran are set to start on November 4
  • other producers may struggle to fully make up for the expected Iran disruption, and that oil prices could rise further

SINGAPORE: Brent crude oil prices rose back above $80 a barrel on Monday as markets were expected to tighten once US sanctions against Iran’s crude exports are implemented next month.
Benchmark Brent crude oil futures were at $80.26 a barrel at 0646 GMT, up 48 cents, or 0.6 percent, above their last close.
US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $69.60 a barrel, up 48 cents, or 0.7 percent.
The US sanctions on the oil sector in Iran, the third-largest producer in the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), are set to start on November 4. The United States under President Donald Trump is trying to reduce Iranian oil exports to zero to force the country to renegotiate an agreement on its nuclear program.
US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told Reuters on Sunday that it would be harder for countries to get sanction waivers than it was during the previous Obama administration, when several countries, especially in Asia, received them.
OPEC agreed in June to boost supply to make up for the expected disruption to Iranian exports.
However, an internal document reviewed by Reuters suggested OPEC is struggling to add barrels as an increase in Saudi supply was offset by declines elsewhere.
Fatih Birol, executive director of the International Energy Agency (IEA), said on Monday that other producers may struggle to fully make up for the expected Iran disruption, and that oil prices could rise further.
Some relief may come from North America, where US drillers added four oil rigs in the week to Oct. 19, bringing the total count to 873, Baker Hughes energy services firm said on Friday, raising the rig count to the highest level since March 2015.
The US rig count is an early indicator of future output. With activity increasing after months of stagnation, US crude production is also expected to continue to rise.
Reflecting rising US crude exports, the Intercontinental Exchange said its new Permian West Texas Intermediate crude futures contract deliverable in Houston, Texas, will begin trading on Monday.
In addition to the potential for rising oil supply, the ongoing Sino-American trade dispute is expected to start dragging on demand.
“The full impact of the US-China trade war will hit markets in 2019 and could act as a considerable drag on oil demand next year, raising the possibility of the market returning to surplus,” said Emirates NBD bank in a note.
Shipping brokerage Eastport said “Chinese manufacturing is beginning to slow” and that “Trump’s proposal of slapping ... tariffs on additional ... Chinese goods from 1 January would be a further drag on trade.”
K.Y. Lin, spokesman for Taiwan’s Formosa Petrochemical Corp, a major fuel refiner, said “weaker demand in Europe and the US” was already affecting gasoline profit margins as excess fuel is being sent to Asia.