Media Focus on Multinational Corporations[2021.12.20]






BP to buy stake in UK deepwater field from Viaro Energy

Oil major BP has signed a deal to increase its stake in the Foinaven oil field, located in the UK continental shelf (UKCS), by purchasing a 28% interest from Viaro Energy’s subsidiary RockRose.

The sale of the 28% non-operated interest in the Foinaven field forms part of RockRose’s efforts to focus on further growth opportunities in the country’s offshore sector.

Viaro CEO Francesco Mazzagatti said: “The Foinaven field is an iconic development in the UKCS, and we are proud to have played a part in its story.

“We have established a very strong production base and continue to seek opportunities to build our portfolio further as we pursue further growth in the UKCS.”

Discovered in 1990, the Foinaven field started production in November 1997.

BP operates the Foinaven area which comprises the Foinaven and Foinaven East fields. It holds a stake of 72% in the Foinaven field and a 43% stake in Foinaven East field.

RockRose Energy holds the remaining 28% interest in the Foinaven field and holds a stake of 47% in the Foinaven East field.

Upon completion of the latest transaction, BP will hold 100% interest in the Foinaven field and 90% interest in the Foinaven East field.

DNO owns the remaining 10% stake in the Foinaven East field.

The transaction is scheduled for completion in the first quarter of 2022. The financial terms of the deal were undisclosed.

In April this year, the field’s production was suspended following a decision by BP to retire the Petrojarl Foinaven FPSO on the grounds of safety issues.

The FPSO, which is nearing the end of its 25-year design life, is scheduled to be handed back to its owner Teekay in 2022, once it has been decommissioned.

Gazprom Neft

Gazprom Neft and partners established Russia´s 1st association for developing of low-carbon SAF

Neftegaz.RU. Gazprom Neft, together with Airbus, Aeroflot, S7 Group, Volga-Dnepr Group, Zhukovsky Central Aerohydrodynamic Institute (TsAGI) and the State Research Institute of Civil Aviation (FGUP GosNII GA) has established Russia’s 1st technological alliance for developing green aviation fuel.

The Eurasian SAF-Alliance will facilitate the use of environmentally friendly aviation fuel, fully compliant with international standards, at Russian airports.

Members of the Eurasian SAF-Alliance are aiming for the 1st bio-fuelled flight to take place no later than 2024.

We will be delighted to share our knowledge with our partners in the Alliance

The Gazprom Neft Industrial Innovations Technology Centre will act as the Alliance’s main research facility - the company’s cutting-edge science base here facilitating the development of effective green aviation fuel formulations, as well as the technologies for their subsequent commercial production.

Pilot batches of SAF will be produced at Gazprom Neft’s refineries in Moscow and Omsk.


Honeywell, University of Texas to collaborate on new CCS technology

Honeywell announced an agreement with The University of Texas at Austin that will enable the lower-cost capture of CO2 emissions from power plants and heavy industry.

Honeywell will leverage UT Austin's proprietary advanced solvent technology to create a new offering targeted at power, steel, cement and other industrial plants to lower emissions generated from combustion flue gases in new or existing units. The solution provides these sectors with an additional tool to help meet regulatory requirements and sustainability goals.

Honeywell has committed to achieve carbon neutrality in its operations and facilities by 2035.

The licensing arrangement with UT Austin expands Honeywell's leading carbon capture technology portfolio. Today, 15 MMtpy of CO2 is being captured and used in storage/utilization applications through Honeywell's CO2 Solutions process expertise. Honeywell currently has the capacity to capture 40 MMtpy through its installed projects worldwide.

UT Austin's patented solution utilizes an advanced solvent, which enables CO2 to be captured at a lower cost through greater efficiency using smaller equipment. For a typical power plant (650 MW capacity), applying advanced solvent carbon-capture technology would enable the capture of about 3.4 MM tons of CO2 annually, equivalent to removing nearly 735,000 cars from the road each year.

This CO2 removal technology can be retrofitted within existing plants or included as part of a new installation. In this process, CO2 is absorbed into an amine solvent and then sent to a stripper where CO2 is separated from the solvent. This CO2 is then compressed for geological sequestration or used for other purposes.

In 2020, CCUS projects worldwide were capturing and storing/using 40 MM metric tpy of CO2, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA). In order to align with the IEA Sustainable Development Scenario, which demonstrates a pathway to limit global temperature rise by less than 1.65º C, CCUS project capacity must increase more than 20 times to enable capture of 840 MM metric tpy of CO2 by 2030.


Chevron Phillips Chemical to build propylene unit in Texas

Chevron Phillips Chemical announced today plans to expand its propylene business with an FID for a new C3 splitter unit. The unit’s location will be in Baytown, Texas, within the company’s Cedar Bayou facility. Its expected capacity is 500,000 tpy with targeted start up in 2023. The company chose S&B Engineers and Constructors to engineer, procure and build the project. Site construction activities will commence in January 2022. At its peak, the project anticipates supporting 350-plus new construction jobs.

The C3 splitter will convert a refinery grade mixture of propylene and propane into a high purity propylene product. Propylene is essential to the production of key building blocks for many household and industrial applications, including polypropylene, propylene oxide and acrylonitrile. These chemicals are also used in the production of plastics for several packaging applications and durable consumer products. Polypropylene is also central to the manufacturing of plastic parts for various industries including the automotive sector.

“With global propylene demand on the rise, this project reinforces Chevron Phillips Chemical’s commitment to expand to meet our customers’ needs and remain a leading propylene supplier,” said Justine Smith, senior vice president of petrochemicals.

Chevron Phillips Chemical currently operates C3 splitter units at its Cedar Bayou, Port Arthur and Sweeny, Clemens and Old Ocean facilities in Texas. The new unit will provide additional flexibility and production to meet anticipated demand from the company’s growing customer base, while establishing room for future growth.

“Our company is thankful for the support of our customers, elected officials and local community. Baytown is already home to important assets for our company, and we look forward to becoming an even more important economic engine for the local economy, while expanding our business to meet global customer demand,” said Smith.

United Airlines plans

United Airlines plans to purchase up to 100 hydrogen-electric engines

Under the deal, United said it expects to purchase up to 100 of ZeroAvia’s ZA2000-RJ — an engine it described as zero-emission and 100% hydrogen-electric.

The airline said the engine was “expected to be used in pairs as a new power source for existing regional aircraft.”

United said it plans to pursue a conditional purchase agreement for 50 of the engines, with an option for 50 more. The tech could be retrofitted to aircraft from 2028, it added.

In a statement issued Monday, United CEO Scott Kirby said hydrogen-electric engines were “one of the most promising paths to zero-emission air travel for smaller aircraft.”

In a separate announcement, ZeroAvia said it had raised $35 million in funding. Alongside United, others taking part in the funding round include Alaska Air Group, whose investment was previously announced.

In total, ZeroAvia says it has attracted $115 million of investment from a range of stakeholders including Shell Ventures, Amazon’s Climate Pledge Fund and Breakthrough Energy Ventures.


Shell and QatarEnergy enter new partnership in Red Sea blocks

QatarEnergy will acquire a 17% stake in each of Shell's Blocks 3 and 4 in the Egyptian Red Sea, Shell announced on Monday.

Shell will remain the operator in both offshore exploration blocks after the agreements receive government and regulatory approvals.

Shell has operated both blocks since late 2019.

'We were able to attract new market entrants thanks to the favourable investment climate in Egypt,' Khaled Kacem, Shell’s vice president and country chair for Egypt, said.

Shell will remain as operator with a 43% stake once the agreements are closed. BHP will hold 30% share in Block 3 while Tharwa Petroleum Company and QatarEnergy will have a 10% and 17% interest, respectively.

In Block 4, Shell will hold operator status with a 21% share, with Mubadala holding 27% and BHP with 25%. Tharwa Petroleum Company and QatarEnergy will also have a 10% and 17% interest, respectively.


Shell extends renewable energy commitment with Savion acquisition

Shell New Energies US, a subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell, has signed an agreement to buy 100% of Savion LLC (Savion), a large utility-scale solar and energy storage developer in the United States, from Macquarie’s Green Investment Group. With this acquisition, Shell expects to significantly expand its global solar portfolio.

“Savion’s significant asset pipeline, highly experienced team, and proven success as a renewable energy project developer make it a compelling fit for Shell’s growing integrated power business,” said Wael Sawan, Integrated Gas and Renewables & Energy Solutions Director. “As one of the fastest-growing, lowest-cost renewable energy sources, solar power is a critical element of our renewables portfolio as we accelerate our drive to net zero.”

Savion specialises in developing solar power and energy storage projects and currently has more than 18 gigawatts of solar power and battery storage under development for a variety of customers, including utilities and major commercial and industrial organisations.

The Savion acquisition bolsters Shell’s strategy to develop an integrated power business as it moves to become a net-zero emissions energy business by 2050, in step with society. As part of this strategy, Shell aims to sell more than 560 terawatt hours of power globally per year by 2030: twice as much electricity as the company sells today.

The acquisition is expected to close by year end.


TotalEnergies to conduct study for Zahrani power plant

TotalEnergies has agreed to conduct a technical and financial preliminary study related to building a floating regasification unit in Lebanon's Zahrani power plant, the Lebanese Energy Ministry said on Monday.

The ministry's statement said the plant has capacity for about 650 MMm3 of gas annually, but this will rise to 1.4 Bm3 after construction of the additional unit.

Lebanon is grappling with crippling economic and fuel crises and has struggled with meagre supplies of state-generated power for months.

The agreement with TotalEnergies was reached during Lebanese energy minister Walid Fayad's visit to Paris, where he met the French group's CEO Patrick Pouyanne.

The company also expressed willingness to supply Lebanon with the required infrastructure to store and regasify liquid gas, the ministry statement said.


Exxon, QatarEnergy Get More Acreage Offshore Cyprus

A consortium of ExxonMobil and QatarEnergy has signed an exploration and production sharing contract (EPSC) with the government of Cyprus for Block 5 located offshore, southwest of the island nation.

QatarEnergy along with ExxonMobil already holds one exploration block in Cyprus – Block 10 – and this will be the consortium's second exploration block in the country.

Block 10 was fruitful for the duo. It was awarded in 2017 and resulted in the Glaucus gas discovery announced in February 2019 with estimated in-place resources of 5 to 8 trillion cubic feet of gas. QatarEnergy claimed that further assessments are planned over the coming months to further refine this estimate.

The Qatari company said that, under the terms of the EPSC, QatarEnergy will hold a 40 percent working interest in Block 5 while ExxonMobil will be the operator and will hold a 60 percent working interest.

Natasa Pilides, Cyprus Minister of Energy, Commerce, and Industry, signed the EPSC with the representatives of ExxonMobil and QatarEnergy.

Block 5 covers an area of 1,740 square miles in water depths of up to 8,200 feet and is adjacent to Block 10.

“We are pleased with the signing of this EPSC, which expands our footprint in Cyprus. As confirmed by our discovery in Block 10, this region is promising and has very good potential for hydrocarbon exploration,” Saad Sherida Al-Kaabi, the Minister of State for Energy Affairs, the President and CEO of QatarEnergy, said.

“We look forward to continuing to collaborate with the government of Cyprus and with our long-term strategic partner ExxonMobil to contribute to the exploration of natural resources in the Republic of Cyprus, and bring a significant addition to our growing international portfolio,” he added.

Saudi Aramco

Saudi Aramco and Chevron Lummus Global to co-develop Aramco HOPI+ technology

Chevron Lummus Global LLC (CLG) and Saudi Aramco announced that they have signed a joint collaboration and license agreement to co-develop and license Saudi Aramco's Heavy Oil Processing Initiative (HOPI+) technology, according to Hydrocarbonprocessing.

HOPI+ aims to achieve relatively higher conversion of vacuum residue and other available heavy feeds, including incremental crude, using CLG's LC-FINING platform (jointly referred to as LC-HOPI+). The LC-HOPI+ innovative process is expected to help minimize both CAPEX and OPEX and significantly improve margins for bottom-of-the-barrel upgrading.

In 2019, Saudi Aramco joined CLG at its research and development facility in Richmond, California, to create and develop the initial concept pilot testing. Success there led to further HOPI+ evaluations against different process schemes, which further helped quantify the technology's added value.

'HOPI+, combined with CLG's LC-FINING platform, is an innovative concept that simultaneously increases crude throughput and converts residue to valuable transportation fuels and petrochemical feedstock while minimizing capital and energy,' said Ujjal Mukherjee, Managing Director, CLG. 'The initiative further strengthens the relationship between Saudi Aramco and CLG as we develop, pursue and commercialize new and innovative technology.'

Chevron Lummus Global and Saudi Aramco now intend to co-develop LC-HOPI+ technology before global commercialization by CLG.

Rystad Energy

Major Guyana projects pushing oilfield service growth – Rystad Energy

Norway-based Rystad Energy recently examined how an accelerated transition to cleaner fuel sources could impact oil and gas suppliers. Using its own data-driven forecasts for energy supply, the energy research and business intelligence company concluded that a rise of 1.6°C versus pre-industrial levels can still be a likely trajectory for global temperatures, although at present the world is heading towards a larger increase.

“Looking deeper into what type of fields are likely to be developed – whether they be oil or gas, involve subsea, floating or grounded offshore facilities, be they conventional or unconventional projects – makes it possible to analyse how various service segments will develop in different scenarios,” Rystad Energy said. “For each of the major five service segments in oilfield services, we can compute the likely compound annual growth rates in the next three decades to see which segments are likely to prove the most resilient.”

Between 2020 and 2030, the subsea product lines are the one that are likely to fare best, potentially even posting growth in a 1.6-degree scenario.

“With the major deepwater successes in Brazil and Guyana, subsea equipment and SURF will see major demand growth as these growing oil economies are heavily dependent on their fossil fuel resources in the current decade,” Rystad Energy said.

The maintenance, modifications and operations (MMO) and engineering, procurement, construction and installation (EPCI) sectors are where it expects growth to occur in all three climate scenarios – 1.6°C, 1.8°C and 2.0°C – in this decade as greenfield projects being prioritized by exploration and production operators in the next five years.

Guyana has a string of major projects underway and in the pipeline at the giant ExxonMobil-operated Stabroek Block. Liza 1 began producing oil in late 2019 and Phase 2 is set to come on stream early next year. A third project at Payara is already approved and a fourth at Yellowtail is waiting the greenlight from local authorities. All told, these projects will deliver over 800,000 barrels of oil per day by mid-decade.


CNOOC Limited Intends to Voluntarily Delist from the Toronto Stock Exchange

CNOOC Limited (the 'Company', SEHK: 00883,  TSX: CNU) announces that it has applied for a voluntary delisting of its American Depositary Receipts ('ADRs') from the Toronto Stock Exchange ('TSX') in Canada.  Subject to such application being accepted by the TSX, it is expected that the ADRs will be delisted from the TSX effective as of the close of trading on December 31, 2021.

The Company has decided to pursue the voluntary delisting of the ADRs from the TSX following the delisting of the ADRs from the NYSE effective at the close of trading on October 22, 2021(Eastern Standard Time).

Security holder approval for the delisting of the ADRs will not be sought because the Liquidity Event meets the requirements of Section 720(b) of the TSX Company Manual, and for which all material conditions have been satisfied and the likelihood of non-completion is remote.

In arriving at the determination to delist from the TSX, the Company considered, among other things, the delisting of the ADRs from the NYSE and the effects thereof on the TSX listing, the minimal trading volumes on the TSX, the burdens associated with the listing on the TSX and the availability of an alternative market for the underlying ordinary shares in the Hong Kong Stock Exchange (the 'HKSE').


Lenovo to deepen cooperation with SJTU

Lenovo Group Ltd plans to devote 200 million yuan ($31.42 million) over the next three years to deepen cooperation with Shanghai Jiao Tong University, a premier university in China, in the three areas covering scientific research, talent training and new technology incubation.

The plan comes after a high-performance computing center named after Lenovo chairman and chief executive Yang Yuanqing was officially unveiled at the Tsung-Dao Lee Institute of Shanghai Jiao Tong University earlier this week.


LinkedIn makes China comeback

LinkedIn announced on Tuesday that it has launched InCareer, a new jobs app designed to help professionals in the Chinese mainland find jobs and companies discover talent in China.

The United States-based company said that the launch of the app marks the first step in its new strategy for China.

LinkedIn had since mid-October started to phase out the China version of its platform, explaining that it would instead strengthen the company's focus on jobs with a new app.

The company said that it will rely on the feedback from its members and customers over the coming months to optimize the app and create a world-class user experience.


Mining giant BHP to spur NEVs in China

Mining giant BHP Group said it will support the growth of electric vehicles or EVs in China, the world's largest auto market.

One of its top executives said on Tuesday that BHP is anticipating more growth opportunities in the country amid urbanization.

BHP, he said, sees China's new energy vehicle or NEV revolution as a big opportunity. 'We aim to increase our exposure in the years to come, and are committed to the building of the broader electric vehicle ecosystem in China,' said Huw McKay, chief economist at BHP.

As the new energy vehicles in China are to become more prevalent in the years to come, the company is committed to further increase its presence in the country and supply more reliable, sustainable supply of raw materials such as nickel for batteries, he said.

BHP, he said, anticipates that demand for nickel from the battery sector will grow by over 500 percent in the coming decade.

Guangzhou Shipyard.

New luxury ocean liner will head to Baltic soon

A new luxury passenger ship built by Guangzhou Shipyard International Co for Denmark's Det Forenede Dampskibs-Selskab will leave Guangzhou for Europe within the week.

The vessel, which was delivered on Thursday is expected to operate between ports along the Baltic Sea in Europe.


ZESA, Tsingshan start tying iron and steel plant to grid in Zimbabwe

The Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority (ZESA) and the Dinson Iron and Steel Company (Dinson) have formed a public-private partnership to construct 97 kilometres of a high voltage power line that will connect the $1 billion iron and steel plant to the national electricity grid.

ZESA, the only electricity generator and supplier for the public grid in Zimbabwe, has finished the construction of 27 kilometres of the power line tying the plant to the grid. A delay in the construction of the power line has held back the construction of the plant touted to become the biggest steel manufacturer in the Southern African Development Community.

Dinson, a subsidiary of China's Tsingshan Holding Group Company Limited, is the constructor of the iron and steel plant, which is scheduled for commissioning next year.


BMW to expand presence in Chinese market

SHENYANG -- German luxury carmaker BMW on Thursday announced its upgraded strategy in the Chinese market, with three new or upgraded plants to open in 2022.

At its New Year media conference, BMW Group China said it is determined to continue its close cooperation with China's automobile industry and attaches importance to Chinese market demands in new product development.