Total strips Maersk Oil of its rights to Qatar’s largest oil field

Maersk Oil is beating a retreat from Qatar. The Danish firm has lost out in a bid to extend its rights in the Al Shaheen oil field, its 25-year contract there expiring in one year’s time. The oil field, developed with Qatar Petroleum, is the largest in the Middle Eastern country. France’s Total beat out six other bidders to win the rights for the next 25 years, taking a 30% stake in the field.

“Maersk Oil presented a highly competitive technical and commercial proposition based on more than 20 years of technical knowledge and experience working with the Al Shaheen field,” said Maersk Oil CEO, Jakob Thomasen.

Maersk Oil will be redeploying a number of its employees which today are based in Qatar elsewhere in its global organisation. The majority of remaining employees in Qatar are expected to be offered employment by the new operator, the Danish company said in a release.

Maersk Oil has announced a number of redundancies this year as well as plans to pull back from a number of oil fields around the world.

Meanwhile, Total’s CEO Patrick Pouyanne said in Doha today: “We have a plan to invest for five years 2017-2022, more than $2 billion in that field in order to integrate technology. Our first objective is to maintain 300,000 barrels a day. Currently that’s not a given as there’s a natural decline (in production) as its a complex field.”

Aban Offshore secures ONGC drillship contract

India’s Aban Offshore has announced that a subsidiary of the company has received a firm letter of award from Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC).

Under the agreement, Aban Offshore will deploy it drillship Aban Abraham for a firm period of 2 years from the fourth quarter of 2016.

The expected revenues from the contract is about $87m.

Triyards Sets Up Ship Repair Subsidiary in Singapore

Singapore-based Triyards Holdings Limited has formed a new shipbuilding and repair subsidiary in Singapore, according to the company’s announcement.

Triyards’ wholly-owned subsidiary, Triyards Fabrication Services Pte. Ltd. (TFS), has been incorporated with a paid-up capital of USD 2 comprising of 2 ordinary shares.

The main activity of TFS would be repairing and building of ships, tankers and other ocean-going vessels, Triyards said, adding that “none of the directors or controlling shareholders of the company has any interest, direct or indirect, in the incorporation of TFS.”

The company earlier said that its net profit for the quarter ended February 29, 2016 increased by 10% to USD 5.3 million compared to the USD 4.9 million recorded in same period a year earlier.

During the second quarter of 2016, Triyards experienced a 15% higher revenue of USD 70.5 million, which was mainly attributed to work done on four liftboats, two multi-purpose support vessels and three chemical tankers, as well as the construction of aluminium crew boats and wind farm vessels by the company’s subsidiary Strategic Marine Group.

DP World to invest $1.2bn in Ecuador’s first deepwater port

The contract for developing and operating Ecuador’s first deep-water port, a $1.2bn project, has been awarded to Dubai-based DP World.

The deal, signed on Monday, will grant DP World a 50-year concession on the port to be built at Posorja on the delta of the Guayas River.

Posorja sits about 70 miles away from the country’s business centre, Guayaquil.

The port will focus on containers but have the ability to handle other types of cargo. When complete it will have 750,000 teus of container capacity.

In its statement about the deal DP World said its initial $500m investment will include purchase of land, dredging an access channel, building an access road and a 400-metre berth equipped to handle containers and other cargo.

Work on the project should begin in six-to-nine months and take around two years to complete, DOP World says.

The company’s Ecuadorean partners Consorcio Nobis and Grupo Vilaseca will work on the project.

There was no competitive tender as the Ecuadorean government negotiated directly with DP World, which has a portfolio of dozens of marine terminals around the world including several in South American nations such as Argentina, Brazil, Peru and Suriname.

Ecuador, in the northwest of South America, has a Pacific coast. It has four international ports already but none of them are deep-water.

Korea Development Bank takes over HMM

Korea Development Bank (KDB) is taking over troubled local line Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM). HMM said it decided today to implement a capital reduction without refund for the stakes held by the company’s affiliate major shareholders by 7 to 1.

This is the latest process in HMM’s restructuring plan which started in earnest in February as the line fights $5bn in debts.

According to the plan, the 7 to 1 capital reduction without refund will be executed for 6,066,273 shares held by Hyundai Elevator (17.51%), 613,563 shares of Hyundai Global (1.77%) and Hyundai Group chairman Hyun Jeong-eun’s 571,428 shares (1.65%).

After the reduction, the stakes of Hyundai Elevator, Hyundai Global and chairman Hyun in HMM will drop to 3.65%. Following the planned debt-equity swap after the capital reduction, the state-run Korea Development Bank (KDB) is going to be the largest shareholder of HMM. KDB is among the most powerful institutions in shipping these days, being the de facto boss of many leading Korean yards as well as other lines too.

It is expected that the operation of HMM will be stabilized under the systematic management and support by KDB should it become the largest shareholder of the company,” HMM said in a release. The line is still confident it can join THE Alliance, the newest container grouping, announced last month.

HMM plans to hold an extraordinary general meeting on July 15 to determine the agenda of its reduction of capital concerning affiliates.

Swiber secures $215m worth of contracts

Swiber Holdings has announced that it has secures three new contracts for projects in the Middle East and Southeast Asia regions worth a total of $215m.

Swiber was awarded an EPCI contract from a European oil company to perform pipeline replacement work in Qatar, marking the group’s first offshore construction project in the Middle East.

“Despite the ongoing oil market volatility and challenging condition in the offshore oil and gas industry, Swiber continues to demonstrate our aility to successfully secure new projects. In fact, one of these new projects represents an important breakthrough for Swiber into the lucrative Middle East market,” said Darren Yeo, deputy group ceo of Swiber.

The other two contracts are a EPCI contract in Myanmar with a Southeast Asian oil and gas company, and a transport and installation service contract in Vietnam.

“While Southeast Asia has seen a slowdown in offshore oil and gas activities over the past couple of years, it remains an import market for Swiber as our projects in this area contributed $117.1m or 14.1% of the group’s revenue in 2015,” Yeo said.

The latest contracts have lifted Swiber’s orderbook to around $1.2bn.

Rebranded Abu Dhabi Ports marine subsidiary expands fleet

UAE port operator Abu Dhabi Ports has announced that it has renamed its subsidiary, Abu Dhabi Marine Services, to SAFEEN – meaning ships in Arabic, as part of a rebrand.

As part of expanding its fleet and improving services, SAFEEN has added a new tug boat named MAQTAA to its existing fleet of five tugs, five pilot boats, six speed boats, one buoy maintenance boat and two oil spill response boats. The company also plans to acquire three more tugboats by the end of 2016.

“The ISM certification coupled with our acquisition of the new tug boat mark the grand launch of our new brand, which gives utmost value to servicing our esteemed clients. These achievements prove that this makeover is about achieving substantial improvement in the capacity and quality of our marine services, which play a major role in the region’s maritime industry,” said Captain Mohamed Juma Al Shamisi, ceo of Abu Dhabi Ports.

Established in March 2013, Abu Dhabi Marine Services provides a comprehensive range of marine and ancillary quayside services to vessels calling at Abu Dhabi seaports in a safe, secure and efficient manner.

Oil prices hit US$50 for the first time in 2016

Oil prices hit US$50 a barrel on Thursday for the first time in seven months supply disruptions and increased global demand

Global oil benchmark, Brent crude, hit US$50.14 per barrel early on Thursday, data from Energy Intelligence showed.
Oil prices are up 89 per cent from when it hit a 13-year low of below US$28 a barrel in February. Wildfires in Canada’s oil sands, disruption in production and supply in the Nigerian and Libyan energy sectors owing to political unrest, and a near economic meltdown in OPEC member Venezuela have reduced immediate production by nearly 4mn bpd, leading to a rise in buying in crude futures.
Brent and US crude’s West Texas Intermediate (WTI) futures have risen nearly 90 per cent from 12-year lows hit this winter, recouping about half of what they lost since mid-2014 when both traded at above US$100 a barrel, Reuters reports.
Since hitting the US$50 mark, the oil price has fallen as investors raise concerns that robust price gains may lead to more output and further add to the global glut. US crude oil for July delivery fell 8 cents to settle at US$49.48 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude lost 15 cents or 0.3 per cent to US$49.59 a barrel on ICE Futures Europe. According to analysts, a climb above US$50 per barrel may spur producers to revive scrapped operations, which may bloat supplies and trigger a new selloff.