Media Focus on Multinational Corporations[2022.01.10]






ExxonMobil Announces Two New Oil Discoveries In Guyana

ExxonMobil has made two more discoveries in the Stabroek block offshore Guyana, which add to the previously announced 10 billion oil-equivalent barrels recoverable resource estimate for the block, the U.S. supermajor said on Wednesday.

Exxon struck high-quality oil and hydrocarbon-bearing sandstone reservoirs at the Fangtooth-1 and Lau Lau-1 wells in the block off Guyana, which continues to be one of the U.S. corporation’s priority exploration and production areas for the next few years.

“Both discoveries increase our understanding of the resource, our continued confidence in the block’s exploration potential, and our view that the many discoveries to date could result in up to 10 development projects,” said Mike Cousins, senior vice president of exploration and new ventures at ExxonMobil.

Since 2015, when it first struck oil offshore Guyana, Exxon has made more than 20 discoveries in the waters of the South American nation.

Now Guyana wants to capitalize on the large oil and gas discoveries over the past half-decade to build up an economy powered by its own energy resources.

The South American nation became a crude oil exporter in early 2020, thanks to Exxon’s huge discoveries offshore Guyana. Over the past two years, the U.S. supermajor and Hess Corp, its partner in the prolific Stabroek Block, have made a dozen more discoveries, while the Liza Phase 1 project is very profitable for the oil corporations and for Guyana.  

Liza Phase 1 and 2 developments break even at around $35 a barrel and $25 per barrel Brent, respectively, Hess says. Liza Phase 2 start-up is expected in the middle of 2022 via a floating, production, storage and offloading vessel (FPSO) designed to produce up to 220,000 barrels of oil per day (bpd).

Exxon also said today that the hull for the Prosperity FPSO vessel, the third project on the Stabroek block at the Payara field, is complete, and topside construction activities are ongoing in Singapore for planned production start-up in 2024. The Field Development Plan and Environmental Impact Assessment for the fourth potential project, Yellowtail, have been submitted for government and regulatory review.


Gazprom signs

Gazprom signs four-year gas deal with Botas

Russia's Gazprom Export has signed new four-year gas supply agreement with Turkish state energy company Botas, the export arm of gas producer Gazprom said on Thursday.

Gazprom Export will supply up to 5.75 Bm3y of gas to Botas under the deal, it said in a statement.


Saudi Aramco

Saudi Aramco Dishes Out $2.2B Zuluf Field Deal

Saudi Arabian giant Saudi Aramco has awarded a $2.2 billion contract to UAE’s National Petroleum Construction Company (NPCC) for a project located offshore Saudi Arabia.

NPCC – a wholly-owned subsidiary of the National Marine Dredging Company (NMDC) – secured the $2.2 billion Saudi Aramco deal for two packages for the Zuluf offshore field.

NMDC stated in a brief statement published on the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange that the project would be executed over three years. The company revealed no other details regarding the deal.

In recent times, NPCC has been winning billions of dollars in contracts with different companies. Apart from this latest deal, the company won another $1.26 billion in two deals with the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) during 2021.

The first deal was agreed on in late May 2021. ADNOC awarded a $744 million contract for the full field development of the Belbazem Offshore Block.

The second deal relates to ADNOC awarding an EPC contract worth $514 million for the Dalma gas development project to NPCC in mid-November of last year.


Xiaomi stays confident amid India tax row

Xiaomi Corp said on Thursday that it has always operated in accordance with applicable laws and regulations around the world and it will continue to communicate with the concerned Indian authorities about tax issues.

The comments came after India's Ministry of Finance on Wednesday said in a statement that it had asked the local unit of Chinese smartphone giant Xiaomi to pay 6.53 billion rupees ($87.80 million) in import taxes after an investigation found that the company had evaded some duties.

Experts said the tax issue will not have a big impact on Xiaomi's business in India, but more efforts are needed for Chinese companies to strengthen communication with local governments.

Xiaomi said in a statement that the tax the Indian authorities wanted it to pay is related to imported goods' royalties between April 1, 2017 and June 30, 2020, and it has nothing to do with Xiaomi's recent business.

The root cause of the tax issue is that the parties have different opinions on the price determination of imported goods, Xiaomi said, adding that whether or not royalties including patent license fees should be included in the price of imported goods is a complicated technical problem.

Xiaomi said the statement is not the final result and it will continue to communicate with the concerned Indian authorities on the matter.

China Huarong

Asset management company resumes trading following 9-month suspension

Trading in the shares of Hong Kong-listed China Huarong Asset Management Co, a manager of distressed assets, resumed on Wednesday after a nine-month suspension due to delay in publishing its earnings report, which was followed by a State-backed bailout.

Its shares closed at HK$0.51 (6.5 cents), down 50 percent from the previous close on March 31.

Wang Wenjie, executive director and vice-president of Huarong AMC, said at a news conference on Wednesday: 'Through the introduction of strategic investors and more capital, Huarong will effectively replenish core tier 1 capital, enhance its capital regulatory indicators and shareholder structure, largely improve its risk resistance capacity and consolidate the foundations of sustainable development.'

Huarong also said it will now consolidate its core competencies in disposal of nonperforming assets and keep improving its capabilities of serving the real economy.

China Mobile

China Mobile joins peers on Shanghai bourse for largest listing in decade

Shares of China Mobile edged up slightly on Wednesday after it listed on the Shanghai Stock Exchange in the largest initial public offering on the A-share market in the past 10 years.

China's big three telecom carriers, including China Telecom and China Unicom-two smaller rivals of China Mobile-have now all moved back to the Shanghai Stock Exchange from the US markets.

The stock opened at 63 yuan ($9.89), 9.4 percent higher than the offer price of 57.58 yuan, before consolidating gains and closing 0.5 percent higher at 57.88 yuan.

According to its prospectus, China Mobile could raise nearly 56 billion yuan from the listing after the company exercises an over-allotment option.


Clover announces biotech R&D center

Clover Biopharmaceuticals Ltd, a global clinical-stage biotechnology company developing novel vaccines and biologic therapeutic candidates, announced on Wednesday the construction of a new research and development center in Zhangjiang Biotech and Pharmaceutical Industrial Base in Shanghai.

The Zhangjiang Biotech and Pharmaceutical Industrial Base, dubbed 'Zhangjiang Pharma Valley', is one of the top biotech hubs in China and is home to over 1,000 innovative biotechnology and biopharmaceutical companies.

The R&D center is planned to cover over 25,000 square meters and include new preclinical research laboratory facilities, manufacturing process development labs and a good manufacturing practice pilot plant.

According to the company, construction of the R&D facilities is expected to be completed in the second quarter of this year and the entire R&D center is planned to be completed in the second half of the year. Clover intends to recruit hundreds of new hires from the area's deep talent pool to supplement its existing R&D capabilities and accelerate the development of multiple new product candidates.

Swire Coca-Cola

Swire Coca-Cola in Xiamen expands production

XIAMEN -- Non-alcoholic beverages manufacturer Swire Coca-Cola in Xiamen, East China's Fujian province, opened a new production line and expanded its warehouse, the company has said.

A ceremony for the completion of the new production line and the warehouse expansion was held at the Swire Coca-Cola Beverages Xiamen Ltd on Tuesday.

According to the company, the capacity of the new production line can reach 54,000 bottles per hour, 3,000 bottles more than that of the current production lines. It is able to produce a maximum of 1.3 million bottles per day.

In 2021, Swire Coca-Cola achieved a 5 percent increase in output value. Both its sales revenue and after-tax profit posted double-digit growth last year.


Tesla envisions market for electric vehicles in Xinjiang

The richest man in the world has made a statement about Xinjiang.

By opening a showroom in Northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region, Elon Musk's electric-car company, Tesla, has shown a commitment to a brisk market.

Tesla announced the opening of the showroom in Urumqi, the capital of Xinjiang, in a Dec 31 post on its account on the Sina Weibo social media platform.


Amazon to continue Kindle support in China

US-based tech giant Inc said on Tuesday it is committed to serving Chinese consumers, who can continue to purchase Kindle e-readers from third-party online and offline retailers, after some media reported the company's Kindle business will withdraw from the Chinese market.

The customer service and warranties provided by Amazon will not change, Amazon said in a statement, adding customer interest in Kindle e-book readers has been high, and some models are currently sold out in China.

Kindle's Tmall flagship store closed at the end of October 2021. Some high-end Kindle products are out of stock at JD's self-operated flagship store.


China Minmetals Corporation

China's largest metals, minerals group expects record-high revenue

BEIJING -- China Minmetals Corporation, the country's largest metals and minerals group, is expected to see record-high revenue in 2021, with a falling debt-to-asset ratio and more efficient corporate management.

The operating revenue of the mineral giant in 2021 will surpass 800 billion yuan ($125 billion) for the first time, with a year-on-year increase of 20 percent, the company said in its annual work conference.

The growth of the company's net profits is likely to reach 10 percent in 2021.

The company vows to improve the competitiveness of its core businesses such as metal mining, with continued efforts on brand building, innovation and risk management.


Chipmakers reveal new partners at trade show

As the automotive market requires more high-performance chips for intelligent cockpits and autonomous driving, chipmakers yielded brilliant results at this year's Consumer Electronics Show, launching competitive technologies and a series of partnerships with carmakers.

The United States-based chipmaker Nvidia released the eighth-generation autonomous driving platform Drive Hyperion at this year's CES. It is designed with Nvidia Drive Orin system-on-a-chip, a central computer for software-defined vehicles, that can improve and create a wide variety of new software and service-based business models for carmakers.