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Australia clears Shell’s $70bn deal to acquire BG Group

Royal Dutch Shell secured Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) approval for its $70bn acquisition of BG Group.

ACCC said that the deal would not change the dynamics of the domestic market.

Prior to announcing its decision, the watchdog considered whether the deal would minimise the gas supply, or reduce competition to supply gas to domestic customers by aligning Shell’s interest in Arrow Energy with the Queensland LNG facilities of BG Group.

Inpex’s $34bn Ichthys LNG project in Australia completes offshore pipelay

Pipelay

Japan-based Inpex announced that its $34bn Ichthys LNG project in Australia completed the offshore pipelay for its gas export pipeline.

The 890km, 42in diameter subsea pipeline will be used to export gas from the Ichthys gas-condensate field to the onshore facilities for processing at Bladin Point near Darwin.

Ichthys Project managing director Louis Bon said: "Completion of the offshore pipelay marks a significant milestone for the project."

US states reach $20.8bn final settlement with BP over 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill

oil spill

The US Justice Department and five Gulf states announced a final settlement of $20.8bn with BP over the disastrous Gulf of Mexico oil spill in 2010.

Civil claims have been filed by each of the Gulf States Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas against BP, following the spill.

The latest settlement resolves a lawsuit filed by attorney general Eric Holder on 15 December 2010 against BP and several co-defendants, seeking to hold them accountable for the Deepwater Horizon disaster.

BP Egypt acquires stake in $12bn West Nile Delta project from DEA Deutsche Erdoel

BP Egypt completed the acquisition of its stake in $12bn West Nile Delta (WND) project from Germany-based DEA Deutsche Erdoel.

As part of the acquisition, the company acquired 22.75% in the North Alexandria Concession and 2.75% in the West Mediterranean Deep Water Concession, which forms part of the WND project.

The acquisition will increase BP’s working interest in both concessions to 82.75%. The deal has been completed after receiving approval from the Egyptian General Petroleum (EGPC) and Egyptian Ministry of Petroleum.

Shell to slash investment by $15bn amid declining oil prices

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Shell announced it would be cutting investment by $15bn in the next three years due to the sharp decline of oil prices.

Oil prices have declined nearly 60% in recent months from nearly $115 a barrel in June 2014.

Shell announced it is considering further reductions to capital spending, should the market outlook warrant that step, but is planning to retain growth potential for the medium-term.

North Sea oil and gas sector loses 5,000 jobs since 2014, says report

A report released by the UK’s Oil and Gas Authority (OGA) revealed that the North Sea oil and gas sector has lost more than 5,000 jobs since late-2014.

The new ‘Call to Action’ report, commissioned by the UK Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, identified the key risks facing Britain’s oil and gas industry after a fall in global oil prices.

A 55% fall in brent crude prices created a challenging economic environment for companies involved on the UK Continental Shelf (UKCS), the report added.

Aquatic wins contract on $10bn Moho Nord subsea project in West Africa

Moho Nord

A UK-based subcontractor of Total E&P Congo awarded a contract to Aquatic Engineering and Construction, an Acteon company, to work on the $10bn Moho Nord subsea project, located off the coast of the Republic of Congo, West Africa.

Around 75km off the coast of Pointe Noire, the Moho Nord subsea deepwater offshore project is the latest to be developed in the Moho-Bilondo license.

According to Aquatic, its ten-month campaign portion is set to mobilise in October 2015.

Israel approves long-delayed offshore Leviathan and Tamar gas field developments

Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu approved the long-delayed deal to allow Noble Energy to go ahead with the development of offshore Leviathan and the Tamar gas fields in the eastern Mediterranean Sea.

Noble Energy was notified that the government implemented the natural gas framework through execution of Section 52 of the restrictive trade practices act.

This execution will resolve and provide exemption from claims of the anti-trust authority regarding the acquisition of petroleum rights in the underlying permits by Leviathan joint venture partners.

BP to invest $1bn in UK’s North Sea assets

BP

BP announced it would invest $1bn to help extend the life of its UK North Sea assets.

The company’s latest investment, which is aimed at boosting output from oil fields located off the eastern coast of Scotland, comes at a time when oil companies are seeking to exit the ageing basin.

BP said in a statement that the investment in the Eastern Trough Area Project (ETAP) would secure the future of the field for a further 15 years to 2030.

US plans to cut methane emissions from oil and gas sector

The US unveiled a new plan to cut methane emissions from the oil and gas sector by 40%-45% from 2012 levels by 2025.

The government has unveiled a range of measures to tackle methane emissions across the oil and gas system in order to achieve its goal.

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will work with industry, states and other stakeholders to cut methane emissions from new and modified oil and gas wells.