1 December

Russian gas producer Gazprom posted a net loss of $3.3bn in the September quarter owing to weak rouble, even as it increased its gas exports outlook to Europe. Russian firms have been affected by the depreciation of the Russian rouble, which declined in value due to the Covid-19 pandemic induced economic slump. Gazprom reported its net foreign currency-related loss was $6bn in Q3, against a profit made in the same period in 2019.

Offshore drilling contractor Borr Drilling is facing financial hurdles in the fourth quarter which will extend into 2021, due to hostile market environment coupled with payment delays for rigs operating for Mexican oil major Pemex. Borr is optimistic about rig demand increasing as oil demand bounced back, following news of potential vaccine for Covid-19 and OPEC+ decision to extend production cuts

Malaysian offshore drilling firm Velesto Energy registered a 37.3% drop in revenue in September quarter, compared with $51.2m posted in Q3 2019. The company’s Q3 net profit dropped 98.6% from $8.18m profit registered in corresponding period last year. Velesto attributed the revenue drop to reduced income from drilling services due to fall in jack-up rig utilisation levels from the previous quarter.

Neste announced that it is closing operations at its refinery in Finland and also retrench 370 employees as part of its cost cutting measures. The company is seeking savings of $59.9m owing to a slump in demand for fossil oil products. Neste is planning to revamp its refinery operations in Porvoo and Naantali, even as Covid-19 caused irreversible damage to the global oil sector.

Malaysian oil company Petronas will recommence operations at its Pengerang refinery in Q1 2021. The 300,000bpd capacity refinery was closed in March due to a fire at the site. The restart of the refinery, however, is expected to place additional burden on the east Asian refinery industry, which is already facing issues of oversupply owing to lower demand caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

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