2018: The year’s biggest Offshore Technology stories

27 December 2018 (Last Updated July 29th, 2020 12:57)

China National Petroleum replaced Total in the $4.8bn South Pars natural gas project, a consortium led by Shell announced a $31.9bn JV to supply LNG to emerging Asian markets. Offshore-technology.com wraps up the key headlines from 2018.

2018: The year’s biggest Offshore Technology stories
South Pars onshore facilities near Asaluyeh City in Iran. Credit: Hamed Malekpour.

CNPC replaces Total in $4.8bn South Pars project in Iran

China National Petroleum (CNPC) replaced French energy major Total in the $4.8bn South Pars natural gas project located off the coast of Iran.

Citing a statement made by Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh to the semi-official news agency ICANA, Reuters reported that the Chinese state-owned firm has officially replaced Total.

The development confirms reports in May that CNPC would take over Total’s stake in the project.


Shell leads $31bn Canadian LNG project with Asian energy giants

A consortium of energy companies led by Shell announced a C$40bn ($31.9bn) joint venture (JV) to supply liquefied natural gas (LNG) to emerging Asian markets.

The JV, which includes Shell, PetroChina, Mitsubishi, Malaysia’s Petronas, and Korea Gas Corporation, is Canada’s largest private sector investment project and is expected to deliver 26 million tons of LNG to Asia.

LNG Canada chief executive officer Andy Calitz said in a press release: “The final investment decision taken by our JV participants shows that British Columbia and Canada, working with First Nations and local communities, can deliver competitive energy projects. This decision showcases how industrial development can co-exist with environmental stewardship and indigenous interests.”


New Zealand Government tables bill to stop new offshore permits

The Government of New Zealand tabled a bill in parliament to halt the issuance of new offshore permits for oil and gas exploration, to cut down greenhouse emissions.

Despite the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) stating that this move could imply NZD8bn ($5.31bn) in lost tax over a period of 23 years, the government is still advancing the legislation.

The Crown Minerals (Petroleum) Amendment Bill was tabled in parliament by energy minister Megan Woods. The bill is intended to give effect to the government’s decision in April to stop granting new permits for offshore oil and gas exploration.


Transocean signs agreement to purchase Ocean Rig for $2.7bn

Transocean signed an agreement to acquire offshore-drilling contractor Ocean Rig in a combined cash-and-stock deal worth around $2.7bn, which includes Ocean Rig’s net debt.

If the proposed deal materialises, it will strengthen Transocean’s ultra-deepwater and harsh-environment drilling capabilities.

For each share of Ocean Rig’s common stock, its shareholders will be entitled to receive 1.6128 newly issued shares of Transocean as well as $12.75 in cash, for a total value of $32.28 per Ocean Rig share as per the closing price of 31 August.


India opens bidding for $14.46bn oil and gas reserves

The Government of India opened the Discovered Small Field Policy (DSFC) bid round-II covering 25 discovered oil and gas reserves that are reportedly worth Rs1tn ($14.46bn).

The bidding round has been launched by the Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas & Skill Development and Entrepreneurship Dharmendra Pradhan. It will commence next month and is open until December this year.

Approximately Rs450bn ($6.50bn) are expected in royalties, taxes and profit petroleum during the life of the fields. It is also estimated the DSFC-II will generate 85,000 jobs.


Australian energy firm Santos to acquire Quadrant Energy for $2.15bn

Australian oil and gas firm Santos has agreed to acquire Quadrant Energy in a $2.15bn transaction.

The acquisition will be funded by cash and new debt facilities. As of 30 June 2018, Santos had $.15bn cash on hand.

The agreement also includes any contingent payments linked to Dorado oil/liquids 2C’s resource certification of more than 100 million barrels of oil (mmbbl), as well as a future final investment decision (FID) certification payment and royalties over any future revenue from Bedout Basin project.


Total to sell $1.5bn of UK North Sea assets

French oil and gas company Total is set to divest multiple offshore assets located in the UK North Sea, which could be worth around $1.5bn.

The divestment is expected to include one-third of Total’s stake in Laggan Tormore gas field.

It would also include multiple smaller fields that the company received as a part of the $4.95bn AP Moller-Maersk’s oil and gas unit acquisition, completed in March this year.


ConocoPhillips and BP agree to swap assets in Alaska and North Sea

ConocoPhillips signed an agreement with BP to sell its 16.5% stake in the Clair field, located offshore west of Shetland in the UK.

Upon completion, BP and ConocoPhillips will hold 45.1% and 7.5% interests in the Clair field respectively.

At the same time, the companies have also signed an agreement under which BP will sell its entire 39.2% stake in the Greater Kuparuk Area on the North Slope of Alaska, as well as its 38% interest in Kuparuk Transportation Company to ConocoPhillips.


Noble Energy signs $15bn natural gas supply deal with Egyptian firm

Noble Energy and its partner Delek Drilling signed agreements to export natural gas from the Leviathan and Tamar fields in Israel to Egyptian firm Dolphinus Holdings in a $15bn deal.

Under the agreements, Dolphinus will receive 1.15 trillion cubic feet of natural gas each from the Leviathan and Tamar fields for a period of ten years.

The buyer is expected to use the natural gas to meet demand from industrial and petrochemical customers, as well as future power generation in Egypt.


Neptune Energy closes €4.7bn acquisition of ENGIE E&P International

Neptune Energy Group increased its footprint in the North Sea region through the €4.7bn acquisition of ENGIE E&P International.

The transaction allows Neptune to become an international independent E&P company with operations across the North Sea, North Africa, and South East Asia. The deal was previously agreed by the companies in May 2017.

Last year, the acquired assets produced 154,000 net barrels of oil equivalent a day.