Oil prices have recovered more than 70 percent from the 12-year low reached earlier this year as OPEC’s strategy to pressure rivals with lower prices slowly succeeds in eliminating a surplus. Output in the U.S. has retreated to a two-year low as the boom in shale oil production faltered, while Saudi Arabia told OPEC it raised output last month close to a record.
After half a year of strong oil price rises, Asian crude demand is slowing and by some measures falling, and many market participants suspect it is not just a cyclical phenomenon, but also a product of more permanent structural changes.
The world’s top energy exporter is enduring the longest economic downturn of Putin’s 16-year rule. It relies on crude oil export duties and extraction taxes for about 23 percent of its budget. The government is running the widest deficit since 2010 after a slump in oil prices and is looking for options to cover the gap, including selling state assets, cutting spending and discussing a tax overhaul.
Japan's crude imports from Iran recovered to pre-sanction levels in May, importing 307,691 b/d, up 61.2% year on year and up from 19,161 b/d in April, according to preliminary data released June 30 by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.
The amount of LNG volume delivered to South Asia (India, Pakistan) from Qatar during the first half of the year climbed almost 50% year on year, taking advantage of weaker demand from East Asia (Singapore, Malaysia, Taiwan, Thailand, Japan, South Korea, China) and higher Qatari output.
Indonesia's state-owned oil and gas company Pertamina will seek partners to build a strategic petroleum reserve of about 25 million barrels to ensure energy security.
Midway through 2016, U.S. pipeline exports to Mexico have been increasing substantially. Daily PointLogic data show that year-to-date, pipeline exports to Mexico have averaged 3.5 Bcf/d, 37% above year ago levels and 89% above the five-year (2011–15) average level. Mexico’s growing use of natural gas in the power sector and flat-to-declining production have led Mexico to increase its pipeline imports. At the same time, the growth in power burn has been driven by the increased availability of low natural gas prices as a result of the infrastructure buildout.
Gazprom will send some of the gas from its controversial Nord Stream 2 pipeline through Slovakia, the Russian state-controlled company said, in a move that may soften Slovak opposition to the project.
Gazprom's gas sales in Europe in the first half of 2016 rose by 14.2%, or 10.6 Bcm, compared with the same period of last year, Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller said Thursday, signaling a sharp slowdown in export growth in the second quarter of this year.
Eustream said June 30 that it welcomed assurances from Gazprom at the meetings that the Slovak and the Czech gas transmission systems will be used in long term even if NS2 is built. Eustream said also it “highly appreciates the understanding between both parties that the entry point from Ukraine to Slovakia shall remain fully functional even if NS2 is commissioned.”