Crude oil prices plummet
Crude oil prices hit 7 year lows, on the back of the OPEC summit held in Vienna. OPEC’s decision to keep production at high levels has led to oversupply, whilst some see it as a natural downward pressure on the value of oil. Whilst China has experienced some economic slowdown for 2015, oil imports are up 8.7% for the first 11 months. New vehicle purchases are up and it is expected with low oil prices China will increase its oil imports. Click here for article.
Woodside drop out of merger deal
Woodside have withdrawn its offer to Papua New Guinea based Oil Search. Woodside’s offer of $11.6 billion AUD and one Woodside share to three Oil Search was overwhelmingly rejected by Oil Search. Oil Search controls all of Papua New Guinea’s oil producing fields, and are expected to produce between 6.3 million and 6.9 million barrels this year. This news is expected to shake up the Asia Pacific LNG market. Click here for article.
Chinese shale proving difficult
Despite China having the largest proven reserves of shale gas, geology and the monopolistic nature SOE have on the Chinese oil and gas industry is proving difficult to overcome. Gas is expected to prove a large contributor in China’s push to lower emissions and a greener future. However due to SOE’s been given the preferential locations to explore and drill, small, efficient, entrepreneurial drillers from outside China are choosing not to explore in China. Click here for article.
Venezuelan Government shock
Venezuela, a country with the largest oil reserves in the world, surpassing even that of Saudi Arabia has had an electoral upheaval. The President, Nicholas Maduro, suffered a huge loss at the December 6th election, losing the ruling party’s majority for the first time in sixteen years. The election result can be contributed to a collapse in crude oil prices, which has shattered the economy, drained government coffers and left the country’s currency in tatters. Click here for article.
The smog to end them all
For the first time, Chinese officials have issued a red alert status for the pollution in Beijing. Officials have taken to the street reassuring citizens they are taken the required measures to reduce the pollution. Xi Jinping has used the Paris conference to push for lowering of carbon emissions which has been heavily pushed through public outcry, a recent 30 car pileup due to low visibility in Shanxi province just next to Beijing is only going to fuel the fire. Click here for article.