Posts Tagged ‘Middle East’

The Oil Big Five: Finding a footing when the crude landscape is shifting

Now that the global crude oil markets are in the middle of a sort of upheaval, it seems increasingly harder to have clear thoughts or emotions about what the future holds. There are so many nuances to the slowly emerging new order that it can be difficult to find underlying issues (something we strive to do every month with this feature) or take a firm stand on how you think things will shake out in the future (see our No. 2 pick).

In the October version of The Oil Big Five, we have some officials trying to establish their region’s role in the future, even as everything is uncertain. We also have price movements and crude movements, and we’re hoping this all moves you to leave us a comment. Leave us your thoughts below. What do you think of these topics, and what did we leave off that’s a big issue to you? Or share your ideas on Twitter with the hashtag #oilbig5. Read what our oil editors and analysts nominated as the top issues for the moment, and we look forward to featuring your comments next week.

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The Oil Big Five: Your comments about Mexico and Iraq

This month in The Oil Big Five, we mulled over the fact that the more things change, the more they stay the same. What hasn’t changed for us on The Barrel is we want to feature comments from our readers around the globe, including your thoughts about what’s most important to you about the oil industry. Here are some of the comments we received from our latest entry, and a huge thanks to those who commented, as well as everyone who read the post.

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Fuel-price protests in Yemen, Iraqi Kurdistan highlight oil-producers’ dilemma

In the past two weeks, two Middle East states have experienced significant popular unrest sparked by government moves to cut fuel subsidies.

The circumstances were individual but the similar responses underscore common difficulties faced by all governments in the region that seek to phase out what many of their citizens regard as a birthright.

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Has the UK natural gas market’s year-long downtrend gone into reverse?

The UK gas market has been on a downtrend throughout the year after a mild winter left storage facilities entering summer already at high levels. Qatar has also kept up a steady flow of LNG cargoes throughout the year, sending daily gas prices down from the mid 60s pence/therm in January to the lowest point of the year at 34.60 p/th on July 11.

But the market now seems to have turned 180 degrees, with a sharp jump in prices since mid-August. With higher winter demands on the way, July’s lows may not be seen again this year.

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The Oil Big Five: Questions abound around US Gulf Coast happenings

We’re still waiting on tenterhooks to find out where the United Kalavrvta is going, but we wanted to share some of the comments we got from our readers on the latest posting of The Oil Big Five.

Again, we urge our readers to comment at any point on the posts (and on any post on The Barrel) and tell us what you think of the top issues as picked by our Platts editors and analysts. We welcome comments anytime on Twitter, too, and make sure we see your thoughts by using the tag #oilbig5.

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New Frontiers: Counting up all the battles in the Middle East

As the old saying goes, you can’t tell the players without a scorecard. So in this week’s Oilgram News column New Frontiers, Tamsin Carlisle does just that, skipping through the Middle East to summarize the hot battles, and the cold ones, impacting oil across the region.

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Iraqi turmoil casts cloud over crude oil and steel trade

The spreading crisis in northern Iraq over the past three days has cast additional uncertainty on a time frame for the return of the country’s troubled Kirkuk export crude oil grade — and the regional tension is also clouding the outlook for the country’s steel trade with Turkey.

Turkish steel rebar exports, already under pressure from increasingly competitive China-origin shipments to the Middle East and Africa, may lose Iraq as a market following the takeover this week of the country’s second city of Mosul by Islamist insurgents.

And earlier this week, market sources said that pumping of the oil grade, which is loaded out of the Turkish port of Ceyhan on the Mediterranean coast, is now not expected to resume until August at the very earliest, and the ever-strengthening position of the jihadists in the region has only added to the grade’s uncertain future.

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Petrodollars: Oman gripped by action against oil corruption

In this week’s Oilgram News column Petrodollars, Tamsin Carlisle looks at the anti-corruption drive that has been launched by Oman’s ruler. No surprise, the country’s oil and gas sector is at the heart of the actions that have been taken.

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Petrodollars: Oman stands out in a Middle East, with few other countries raising oil output in ’13

Oman was a star Middle East performer in 2013. Tamsin Carlisle discusses some of the reasons for that growth in this week’s Oilgram News column, Petrodollars.

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Qatar goes offshore to preserves global LNG dominance

Qatar’s LNG development policy has been a matter of considerable international consternation. Why invest tens of billions of dollars to become the world’s leading exporter of the fuel, and then jeopardize that dominant market position by indefinitely extending a moratorium on most upstream gas development?

Research and consulting company Wood Mackenzie thinks it has the answer to that conundrum.

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