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September 7, 2020

Coronavirus company news summary – Petronas to reshape portfolio – August crude oil imports in China rise 13% from last year

By Jessica Paige

7 September

US drilling rig operators have added oil and gas rigs for the second time in three weeks in the wake of a recovery in fuel prices from historic lows as a result of the coronavirus-related lockdowns. According to data from energy services firm Baker Hughes, the operating oil and gas rigs count rose to 256 in the week that ended on 4 September. Reuters cited analysts as saying that higher oil prices have “encouraged” some of the oil and gas producing firms to start adding production units.

Malaysia’s state-owned energy firm Petronas said it would reshape its portfolio after posting its first quarterly loss in about five years. The company cited coronavirus-linked slump in fuel demand and lower oil prices as the reasons for the loss.  Furthermore, the company also warned that its full-year performance for 2020 would be severely impacted and added that the demand may not return to pre-covid-19 levels until the second half of next year.

China’s crude oil imports rose by 13% last month, compared to the same period last year. According to Reuters, the rise is “buoyed” by huge orders placed earlier this year when global oil prices crashed. Another reason is also that the cargoes which have been previously delayed by congestion at arrival ports have now finally cleared customs.

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