Latest storage news
The Port of Corpus Christi has approved a $217 million finance package for a series of major improvements, including the Corpus Christ Ship Channel.
The package will allow the port to continue developing more terminals, rail and channel improvements needed to handle the growing oil and gas volumes from the region's large energy producing fields.
Part of the programme includes the deepening and widening of the Corpus Christi Ship Channel, which will be dredged to 54 feet to accommodate Suezmax and larger vessels. It will also be widened to 530 feet to allow for two-way traffic flows, positioning the port as the deepest draft navigation port in the US Gulf.
These enhancements are designed to handle the growing export volumes of US crude and natural gas, which have propelled the Port of Corpus Christi to what is now the largest energy export port in the US by volume.
Sean Strawbridge, CEO of the Port of Corpus Christi, says: 'We are pleased the commission approved this bond resolution and look forward to a successful round of financing. With the growth our customers are experiencing, coupled with our public private partnership development structures, this additional financing will augment our already strong balance sheet and position the South Texas Coastal Bend for further prosperity.'
Oil product stocks at the Middle East's key oil hub of Fujairah fell 8.4% in the week to Monday, June 18, reaching a five-week low as light and heavy distillates inventories slipped.
Total oil stocks were 17.694 million barrels, down 1.63 million barrels from a week earlier, according to data from the Fujairah Energy Data Committee.
The biggest drop was in light distillates, which fell 12% to 6.052 million barrels. Petrol demand in the Middle East and Asia remained steady, but sentiment was showing signs of waning against rising refinery runs, S&P Global Platts Analytics said in a report Wednesday.
Spot petrol tender demand from Middle Eastern countries has been quiet in recent weeks and it remained to be seen if summer demand will be sufficient to hold up against increasing supply, the report said. Heavy distillate and residue stocks fell 8.8% to 8.898 million barrels from their highest ever level last week of 9.759 million barrels, amid healthy demand for bunker fuel in Fujairah.
Weaker crude prices should give continued support to a fuel oil market that was already seeing high seasonal power generation demand, Platts Analytics said. Stocks of middle distillates rose 1.6% week on week to 2.744 million barrels.
Kuwait's KPC and India's Naraya Energy have recently been large sellers in the tender spot tender market. Indian exports can be expected to continue to rise as domestic demand sees a seasonal downturn during the third quarter. Meanwhile, arbitrage economics for low sulfur gasoil remained unfavorable, with the front-month EFS at around minus $7-%8/mt levels and freight rates high. Gasoil stocks in the Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp region remained low, but ICE gasoil futures were in contango due to expectations of continued arrivals from the US and the Middle East, the report said.
Phillips 66 is expanding its Sweeny Hub with two 150,000 barrel-per-day NGL fractionators, more storage capacity and associated pipeline infrastructure.
The project in Old Ocean, Texas, is expected to cost up to $1.5 billion and will begin commercial operations in late 2020.
Supply agreements have been secured for Y-grade NGL feedstock, including an agreement with DCP Midstream, which has an option to acquire up to a 30% ownership interest in the new fractionators.
Greg Garland, chairman and CEO of Phillips 66, says: 'We are pleased to move forward with the Sweeny Hub expansion, a key part of our midstream growth strategy that further optimises our integrated NGL value chain.
'The Sweeny Hub is strategically positioned to provide fractionation capacity for rapidly growing Permian Basin NGL production and access to US Gulf Coast petrochemical, fuels and LPG export markets.'
Once complete, the Sweeny Hub will have 400,000 barrels per day of NGL fractionation capacity and access to 15 million barrels of total storage capacity.
OPEC has agreed to increase oil production levels as it reduces its level of conformity to 100%.
At its 174th meeting in Vienna, the conglomerate noted that the oil market situation has further improved over the past six months, with the global economy remaining strong, oil demand relatively robust and the market rebalancing evidently continuing.
The conference also noted that confident and investment to the oil industry has returned.
The 100% conformity level will be applied as of July 1 for the remainder of the year.
In May 2018, OPEC member countries reached 152%, exceeding the required conformity level.
Ann-Louise Hittle, vice president, macro oils, at Wood Mackenzie says that the extra 1 million barrels per day means the market is less likely to slip out of control into significant oversupply or undersupply.
'It is an effective way to deal with the uncertainty we noted ahead of the meeting as one of the major problems ministers needed to address. No one yet knows what impact sanctions against Iran have on its production, nor is there certainty about the risk to Venezuela's output in the months ahead.'
Hittle says that the extra supply will ease oil market concern about supply shortages and likely preventing oil price spikes.
She adds: 'The markets should expect less oil price volatility and risk to economic growth because the announcement represents a compromise between responding to consumer pressure and the need for oil producing countries to maintain oil prices and prevent harming their economies.'
However, GlobaData estimates that OPEC production will increase by a minimum of 600,000 barrels per day to match the targeted cuts.
American Midstream Partners will sell its marine products terminalling business to institutional investors for $210 million.
The divestiture of the marine products terminals, including the Harvey and Westwego terminals located in the Port of New Orleans and the Bunswick terminal located in the Port of Brunswick in Georgia, is a continuation of the company's previously announced non-core asset divestiture programme.
The move future simplifies the company's business profile, providing the foundation to further scale its core strategic assets.
Gate Terminal has announced plans to increase the ship loading flow rate at the jetties for large ships to low port time for vessels.
The flow rate will be increased from 2,300 m3/hour to 4,000 m3/hour. The investment will allow Gate terminal to load the new standard size vessels of around 18,000 m3 in less than three days.
The investment comprises a debottlenecking of the pipeline systems used to deliver LNG from the storage tank to the ship and can be installed without a plant shutdown.
Construction will start this summer and will be finished after the summer of 2019.
With this investment Gate terminal will strengthen its pivotal role as the LNG hub terminal for North West Europe.
ExxonMobil is building a new crude storage tank at its Altona Refinery to help meet Australia’s growing demand for transportation fuels.
The new tank will improve the efficiency of Mobil Refining Australia’s, a subsidiary of ExxonMobil Australia, local refining and supply operations.
The new tank will be built in an existing crude oil storage area at the refinery site and construction will start in mid-2018 and is expected to be completed in 2020.
Riccardo Cavallo, Mobil’s manager of refining for Australia and New Zealand, says that the tank represents another major investment in the refinery that complements other recent investments to improve ExxonMobil’s competitive position in Australia.
‘During the past five years, ExxonMobil has invested more than $400 million at the Altona Refinery and Yarraville Terminal. Recent investments include the construction of a 3km pipeline connecting Yarraville Terminal to the Somerton jet fuel pipeline, construction of two new fuel storage tanks at Yarraville Terminal and work to increase Altona Refinery’s production.
‘The additional crude oil storage will help optimise ExxonMobil Australia’s integrated oil and gas business to support continued supply of high-quality, locally produced fuel products to Victorian businesses and households.’
Vopak has launched a new loading station for loading block trains at Vopak Terminal ACS in Antwerp.
The new loading station increases the capacity to handle tank wagons at the terminal by 400%.
This new infrastructure strengthens the terminals role in the Port of Antwerp as a chemical hub for north western Europe. The product group most frequently treated at Vopak ACS is acetyls, which is used in various coatings, packaging as well as pharmaceutical products.
The product is first supplied to the terminal’s customers via ship in Antwerp. Since the majority of processing takes place in Germany, the acetyls are then transported there via rail, making it very important for the Port of Antwerp to be well connected to this hinterland.
The new loading stations means that customers will be able to make better use of the railway transportation. The terminal had 202,000 m3 of capacity spread across 107 tanks.
Stolthaven Houston’s new jetty is on track to be operational next year to increase capacity and minimise waiting times.
The new jetty, which is expected to be ready for layby berthing by September 1 will accommodate tankers of up to 50,000 deadweigh tonnes as well as barges to the east property of the terminal.
It will not only increase capacity and operational efficiency, but will also minimise waiting and turnaround times at the terminal as well as enhance ship-to-shore synergy, which will help to reduce supply-chain costs for customers.
Guy Bessant, president of Stolthaven Terminals, says: ‘Stolthaven operates as part of an integrated solutions provider, and because of that we understand better than most the dynamics of marine infrastructure and assets, and their impact on supply-chain efficiency.
‘The investments we are making in Stolthaven Houston will generate significant benefits for the customers of Stolt-Nielsen.’
Andeavor has announced plans to build a refined products terminal at the Rosarito storage facility of Comisión Federal de Electricidad (CFE).
As part of an agreement with CFEnergía, Andeavor will sign a long-term lease for the land and will build and operate the facility for $100 million.
The infrastructure is expected to reduce Andeavor's cost to directly import fuels into Baja California supporting its growing network of ARCO branded stations and other customers in northwest Mexico.
Greg Goff, chairman, president and CEO, says: 'The expansion of our branded business in Mexico allows s to further extend our integrated West Coast value chain into this attractive and high growth geography.
'This logistics project will further strengthen Andeavor's ability to cost effectively deliver petrol and diesel to our customers directly from our refineries on the West Coast.'
Redevelopment of the facility is expected to be compete in the next two years.
Plans have been submitted by the Yangon Region Government to establish a new multi-purpose terminal in the region.
According to government-owned newspaper Global New Light of Myanmar the terminal in the southern Yangon region would increase foreign currency earnings and facilitate exports and imports.
The plans detail that the terminal would be developed on 1,053 acres of land with a 2.2km waterfront.
The facility will also have a bulk liquid storage terminal to allow for the import of fuel oil, according to U Zaw Aye Maung, Yangon region minister for Rakhine ethnic affairs at Yangon region parliament.
It would also facilitate the export of rice and pulses. Royal Haskoning Company and Surbana Jurong Company have completed a feasibility study.
Oil product stocks in the Middle East's key oil hub of Fujairah rose 8.2% in the week to Monday, June 4 as light and middle distillate inventories rebounded strongly. Total oil product stocks were 18.149 million barrels, up 1.37 million barrels from a week earlier, according to data from the Fujairah Energy Data Committee.
Stocks of light distillates rose by 30.2% week on the week to 7.484 million barrels, bouncing back from a near five-month low last week, the FEDCom data showed.
'Market activity has been slow and quiet due to Ramadan, even more so compared to this time last year. But demand is definitely expected to pick up after the Ramadan,' a Middle Eastern trade source says. The Islamic holy month comes to an end June 14. Stocks of middle distillates also rose, by 14.8% to 2.648 million barrels.
The East of Suez gasoil market has been under pressure due to fresh spot barrels becoming available. That was particularly the case from India, the Middle East and China, S&P Global Platts Analytics said in a report Wednesday.
Bahrain's Bapco has been an active seller, offering as much as 120,000 mt of 10 ppm gasoil for loading in the second half of June in two separate tenders in recent weeks. Indian gasoil exports were expected to rise as its domestic demand declines seasonally in Q3, the report said. Stocks of heavy distillates and residues fell 8.1% to 8.017 million barrels. Bunker activity in Fujairah remained muted amid uncertainty over the direction of crude prices.
However, the first-month/second-month time spread for Arab Gulf 180 CST HSFO swaps saw a strengthening backwardation to $4.25/mt Tuesday, the Platts Analytics report said. That was driven by a tightening Singapore market that has received reduced arbitrage volumes from the Middle East due to summer power demand, it said.
Phoenix Petroleum Philippines and CNOOC Gas and Power Group have signed an agreement to explore building a LNG receiving storage terminal in the Philippines.
Reuters reports that the Philippines is seeking investors to build a storage and distribution facility for imported LNG as it looks to replace its Malampava gas reserves.
In a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange, Phoenix says: 'The agreement for the LNG project will potentially broaden Phoenix Petroleum's portfolio of new businesses, which now include LPG, convenience retailing, asphalt and e-transactions.'
Local media reports that Phoenix vice president for external affairs Raymond Zorrilla says the LNG opportunity would be an addition to the company's expanding portfolio of new ventures complementing and strengthening its core fuel business.
'By investing in clean energy such as LNG, Phoenix Petroleum is doing its part in supporting the Philippines Energy Plan to diversify energy mix and ensure sustainable, stable, secure, sufficient, accessible and reasonably-priced energy.'
Odfjell is seeking to change its terminal division to a more flexible structure as part of the Lindsay Goldberg transaction.
In a capital markets day presentation, the company, which operates eight terminals globally as well as a terminal network in South America, said it is committed to owning and operating terminals in the long-term.
It said that while it is not in 'exit mode' it will consider a 'tag along' in Rotterdam due to:
-Fundamental turnabout of terminals is completed
-Rebuilding the terminal to its full potential will require substantial investments
- Replacing Lindsay Goldberg with a new J/V partner will likely accelerate the capex need
- The terminal is mainly mineral oil focused, and Antwerp is consolidating as the chemical hub.
However, if the Rotterdam terminal is not sold, the company has said it will follow the plan to rebuild as long-term owners and that tangible synergies exist, and some remain untapped.
As previously reported, Lindsay Goldberg plans to sell its 49% shareholding in Odfjell Terminals.
As part of the transaction, Odfjell SE is looking to change its terminal division. Under the future structure, Odfjell SE would control the management company and Odfjell Terminals will become an operational platform.
This new structure would give flexibility to pursue growth projects with other new partners, make it easier to achieve synergies with Odfjell Tankers and make governance easier.
Koole Terminals will expand its biodiesel storage terminal and block train facility at its terminal in the Port of Rotterdam.
The expansion at Koole Tankstorage Minerals will increase rail capacity to an 'unprecedented level in the Rotterdam harbour' according to the company.
The development will allow customers to centralise their biodiesel and diesel storage portfolio at one site.
CEO John Kraakman says: 'Koole Tankstorage Minerals will be the first terminal operator in the ARA to offer block train capabilities of this magnitude and could become a serious competitor to the Hamburg port, which is currently the only – high throughput – diesel block train distribution location amongst the larger ports in north west Europe.'
The new facility will be operational in the second half of 2018.
Australian Industrial Energy plans to build New South Wales' first LNG import storage terminal at Port Kembla.
The terminal will have the ability to supply in excess of 100 PJ per annum, which means it could meet over 70% of New South Wales' total gas needs.
Development and construction of the Port Kembla Gas Terminal will make Australian Industrial Energy (AIE)– an Australian-led international consortium – a central player in the market.
The terminal, which will require a capital investment of between AUD$200 million and AUD$300 million, will increase the certainty of affordable gas supply to NSW.
AIE has entered into 12 MoU's for the supply of gas. The company says that the terminal is a comparatively low-cost and speedy alternative to the construction of new inter-state or cross-country pipelines to transport gas to NSW and the wider eastern seaboard. As a gateway to global sources of natural gas, it could also underpin the vast majority of the state's entire natural gas needs by early 2020.
AIE CEO James Baulderstone, says: 'NSW is facing significant challenges in ensuring available and affordable gas supplies and we are working to make this project a reality as quickly as possible.
'In recent times wholesale gas prices have doubled, and in many cases tripled in NSW. In addition, many industrial companies are now unable to secure gas for any period longer than 12 months.
'The world-leading expertise of the AIE partners, now combined with the enthusiasm of NSW ports and Port Kembla's regional business community to see this project realised, means AIE is well placed to deliver firm, long-term gas on highly competitive pricing and terms as soon as 2020.'
Construction work has started at Duqm Refinery after contractors for the three EPC packages we issued a 'notice to proceed'.
This notice signifies the start of the project schedule of the construction work of the 230,000 bpd refinery. It is expected to be completed and be ready for start-up in 42 months' time.
Contractors will initially allocate resources to complete detailed engineering design work at their home offices where they will be joined by staff from Duqm Refinery.
The projects scope of work is divided into three separate packages. The scope of EPC one, by Técnicas Reunidas and Daewoo Engineering & Construction, includes the process units of the refinery. The scope of EPC two, by Petrofac International and Samsung Engineering, consists of the utilities and offsite facilities and EPC three, by Saipem and CB&I includes the product export terminal at Duqm Port, the Duqm Refinery dedicated crude storage tanks in Ras Markaz and the 80km pipeline from these crude tanks to Duqm Refinery.
Jacobus Nieuwenhuijze, project director of Duqm Refinery, says: 'This truly is an exciting and important milestone for all of us, since it not only signifies start of construction work but also culminates the efforts put in by stakeholders to have the project reach this stage.
President Trump has ended a suspension on steel and aluminium import tariffs for Mexico, Canada and the European Union.
In a statement, the White House says that the president is taking action to 'protect America's national security from the effects of global oversupply of steel and aluminium'. Following extensive discussions, he announced he will implement section 232 tariffs on steel and aluminium imports from these three countries, which were previously excluded from such tariffs.
This follows an announcement in March of a 25% tariff on steel imports and a 10% tariff on aluminium imports.
The US has reached agreements with South Korea, Australia, Argentina and Brazil on steels and with Australia and Argentina on aluminium.
In a statement, the White House says: 'The administration will continue discussions with them and remains open to discussions with other countries.
'The administration will continue to monitor steel and aluminium imports and adjust the measures in effect as necessary to protect the national security of the US.'
In response, API president and CEO Jack Gerard says that this will disrupt the US oil and natural gas industry.
He says: 'We are deeply discouraged by the administration's actions to impose tariffs on our three closest trading partners and view this as a step in the wrong direction.
'The implementation of new tariffs will disrupt the US oil and natural gas industry's complex supply chain, compromising ongoing and future US energy projects, which could weaken our national security.
'Increased prices in specialty steel could threaten the continued domestic production of oil and natural gas and natural gas liquids – which are at their highest levels of production since 1949 – and could raise energy costs for US businesses and consumers, while threatening the nation's ability to achieve President Trump's goal of energy dominance.
'We hope and expect that the administration will recognise the national security benefits of the US oil and natural gas industry and grant API's member companies product exclusions from steel tariffs and quotas in the ongoing Department of Commerce process, as well as provide transparency and flexibility in the process to lessen the impact on US oil and natural gas production, transportation and refining.'
Petronas has entered into an agreement to acquire a 25% equity stake in the LNG Canada project in British Columbia.
Once the transaction is complete, ownership in the project in Kitimat will be 25% Petronas (through its wholly-owned entity North Montney LNG), 40% Shell Canada Energy, 15% PetroChina Canada, 15% Diamond LNG Canada and 5% Kogas Canada.
The project includes the design, construction and operation of a gas liquefaction plants and facilities for the storage and export of LNG, including marine facilities.
It will initially consist of two world-scale LNG processing units, with an option to expand the project in the future to four units.
Petronas president and group CEO Tan Sri Wan Zulkiflee Wan Ariffin says: 'As one of the world's largest LNG producers, Petronas looks forward to adding value to this venture through our long-term expertise and experience across the LNG value chain.
'Petronas is in Canada for the long-term and we are exploring a number of business opportunities that will allow us to increase our production and accelerate the monetisation of our world-class resources in the North Montney. LNG is just one of those opportunities.'
Prasanth Kakaraparthi, senior analyst, Wood Mackenzie, says that this announcement markets an interesting turn of events for the company.
He adds: 'Petronas has signalled its intent to become a portfolio plater and has taken steps to diversify its supply sources. Once both phases are executed, LNG Canada could add up to 7mt of equity into Petronas portfolio – nearly 20% of its 2023 supply.
'We believe this to be a positive development for Petronas. We expect the global LNG market to tighten post 2022 and this bodes well for the project.
'But activity has returned to the LNG space with a number of projects expecting to take FID ahead of 2019. A new wave of project sanctions and rising oil prices could push up project costs and dampen the economics.'
Oil product stocks in the Middle East's key oil hub of Fujairah fell 13.4% in the week to Monday, May 28, as inventory levels declined across all report categories. Total oil product stocks in Fujairah were 16.776 million barrels, down 2.6 million barrels from a week earlier, according to data from the Fujairah Energy Data Committee, or FEDCom.
The biggest change was in light distillates, which dropped by nearly a quarter over the week to 5.750 million barrels, the lowest so far this year, as both the Middle East and Asia have rising petrol demand over the Ramadan season, S&P Global Platts Analytics said in a report Wednesday.
Kuwait's KPC continues to seek additional spot volumes and this week issued a tender for 100,000 mt of RON 91 gasoline over June and July. There has also been a shift in demand towards lower RON petrol, a Middle Eastern trader said. Premiums for Arab Gulf RON 95 gasoline were almost unchanged on the week at $3.10/b on Tuesday.
Stocks of middle distillates fell 13.7% to 2.306 million barrels. But they remain rangebound and have not risen above 3 million barrels since September 11, 2017. The East of Suez market is broadly balanced, but some say supply could begin to outstrip demand as refinery runs rise to peak summer levels in coming weeks, Platts Analytics said.
For now, a tighter supply of gasoil in Europe is attracting Middle Eastern barrels, with the East-West exchange-for-swaps recently at its widest in six weeks. East African demand has also been strong, with sources noting recent vessel shipments from Fujairah to Tanzania, the report said.
Stocks of heavy distillates and residues fell 5.2% to 8.72 million barrels. Strategically located outside the Strait of Hormuz choke point, Fujairah has not only become the world's second largest bunkering port, but is increasingly an important hub for trading and storage.
But bunker activity in Fujairah has been limited this week due to holidays in the US, Europe and Singapore, although sentiment has firmed recently. Bunker prices have followed crude prices retreating from the $80/b Brent futures level last week to just above $75/b Tuesday. This should be positive for bunker demand, adding to seasonal power sector demand over the summer, Platts Analytics said.