CHINA: Hong Kong allows 8 airlines to levy fuel surcharges for 3 months

BEIJING (XFN) – Hong Kong’s Civil Aviation Department has given approval for eight airlines to levy fuel surcharges on passengers for three months, Xinhua news agency reported. The agency quoted sources from the department as saying the eight airlines are Air China, China Eastern Airlines Co Ltd (SH A 600115; HK 0670; NYSE CEA), China...

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PHILIPPINES: Trade Minister supports sale of Petron

MANILA (AFX-ASIA) – Trade and Industry Secretary Manuel Roxas II said he supports plans to sell part of the government’s share of state oil company Petron Corp, San Miguel Corp and the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. He said the sale of government assets would create a significant injection of funds for national coffers while...

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MARKETS: Oil Prices To Stay Supported Despite Coalition Forces Advance Towards Baghdad

Driven almost entirely by political and military events in recent months, the oil markets have turned in their most volatile performance of the past decade. Price swings have been shorter and sharper in recent weeks, in particular since the March 20 start of the US-led war to overthrow President Saddam Hussein of Iraq. Traditional guides...

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CHINA: CNOOC Limited reports record growth and double dividend

China’s CNOOC Limited (NYSE “CEO”, SEHK “883”) last week announced its annual results for the year ended December 31, 2002. It generated oil and gas revenues of Rmb 23.8 billion (US$2.9 billion), an increase of Rmb 6.2 billion (US$751 million), or 35.4% up from 2001. Revenue growth was mainly attributable to a 32.6% production increase,...

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MALAYSIA: Australia’s Ranhill Worley awarded major contract by Sarawak Shell

Ranhill Worley, a partly Australian-owned engineering joint venture, was recently awarded a A$20 million contract by Sarawak Shell Berhad in Malaysia. (US$1=A$1.65). Sarawak Shell is a subsidiary of the Royal/Dutch Shell Group. Ranhill Worley will provide detailed engineering services for rejuvenation of all the existing facilities at the offshore E-11 field as the first phase...

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THAILAND: State enterprises to cut energy costs by 5%

BANGKOK (AFX-ASIA) – Government agencies and state enterprises have been asked to cut energy costs by 5% so as to offset the impact of any higher crude price resulting from the imminent war with Iraq, said Deputy Prime Minister Prommin Lertsuridej. “The 5% cut in energy cost for both state-enterprises and government agencies has started...

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CHINA: Hongkong-based companies in mainland gas deals

HONG KONG (AFX-ASIA) Ð Hong Kong & China Gas Co Ltd (3.HK) and Zhengzhou Gas will be actively implementing gas projects in mainland China in the coming years. Hong Kong & China Gas Co Ltd and state-owned Nanjing General Gas have agreed on the terms of cooperation under a contract to provide piped gas in...

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INDIA: Thousands of Hindustan Petroleum, Bharat Petroleum workers on strike

BOMBAY (AFX) – Thousands of employees at state-run Hindustan Petroleum Corp and Bharat Petroleum Corp took part in a three-day strike last week to protest the government’s decision to privatise the companies. Labour union leaders said workers of India’s largest state-run oil firms went on strike in the refineries as well as the marketing sections...

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CENTRAL ASIA: Shell to pull out of Turkmenistan, Japanese group says Caspian oil well not commercial

ASHKHABAD (AFX) – Royal Dutch/Shell will reduce to a minimum its presence in Turkmenistan from April 1, an official of the oil and gas industry ministry said. “Shell feels there is a lack of prospects for oil and gas projects in Turkmenistan. Just a few people will remain at its Ashkhabad office to observe developments...

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JAPAN: JODCO to file for court protection with 400 billion yen debt

TOKYO (AFX-ASIA) – Japan Oil Development Co has decided to seek court protection from creditors under the Civil Rehabilitation Law with an estimated debt of more than 400 billion yen, the Nihon Keizai Shimbun reported, without citing sources. (US1=118 yen). The legal action was taken with the Tokyo District Court recently, it said. With no...

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MARKETS: US crude imports from Venezuela returning to ‘normal’ but oil stockpiles remain low

US crude oil imports from Venezuela seem to have returned to “normal levels” for the first time since the week ending December 6, 2002, said the US Department of Energy. In its latest weekly update, it said: “This was a major reason why crude oil imports averaged nearly 9.7 million barrels per day for the...

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QATAR: Gas-to-Liquids complex contract comes into force

France’s engineering group Technip-Coflexip said the contract signed on January 30 with Oryx GTL Limited for the design and construction of a GTL (Gas-To-Liquids) complex in Qatar has come into force. Oryx GTL Limited is a joint venture between Qatar Petroleum and Sasol of South Africa. Under the terms of the US$675 million contract, Technip-Coflexip...

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MALAYSIA: Petronas signs US$20 billion pacts to supply LNG to Japanese firms

KUALA LUMPUR (AFX-ASIA) – Petroliam Nasional Bhd said its units Malaysia LNG Sdn Bhd and MLNG Tiga Sdn Bhd have signed two separate agreements worth more than US$20 billion to supply liquefied natural gas to The Tokyo Electric Power Co In and Tokyo Gas Company Ltd. In a statement, Petronas said one of the agreements...

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AUSTRALIA: ANZ could lose further A$208 million from US energy loans Ð UBS

SYDNEY (AFX-ASIA) – Australia & New Zealand Banking Group Ltd (ANZ) could lose a further A$208 million through its exposure to US energy sector debts, but is well protected due to its high provisions for bad and doubtful debts, UBS Warburg said. (US$1=A$1.65). “The financial weakness of the US energy sector over the last 18...

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CHINA: Sinopec Group, CNPC to use reserves to stabilise Shanghai oil supply if needed

BEIJING (XFN) – China Petroleum & Chemical Group (Sinopec Group) and China National Petroleum Corp (CNPC) will use their oil reserves to stabilise the oil supply in Shanghai if needed, the Shanghai Morning Post reported. The newspaper said China’s domestic gasoline and diesel oil prices, which are based on prices in Singapore, New York and...

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THAILAND: Pressure ease on fuel subsidy fund with lower oil prices

As a result of falling oil prices, pressure has eased on Thailand’s eight-billion baht fund for fuel subsidies. (US$1=43 baht). With crude oil at US$35 to 40/barrel at the start of the month, the fund was in danger of running dry in under two months. The government had based the subsidy budget on expectations gasoline...

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JAPAN: Tepco to tap new water sources for power generation

TOKYO (AFX-ASIA) – Tokyo Electric Power Co will start to generate electricity next month using water resources, such as urban sewage systems and streams used for suburban agricultural activities that have not yet been used to produce power, the Nihon Keizai Shimbun reported, citing company sources. Tepco aims for each project to supply enough power...

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THAILAND: PTT rejects reported plan to delist PTTEP

BANGKOK (AFX-ASIA) – PTT Plc said a media report which said the company plans to acquire all the remaining shares of PTT Exploration and Production Plc (PTTEP) that it does not already own via a tender offer and subsequently delist PTTEP from the Stock Exchange of Thailand is not true. PTT never gave any such...

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Wholesale Electricity Market Efficiencies Seen in First Quarter of 2003

Singapore’s Energy Market Company (EMC) said the new wholesale electricity market, launched on January 1, has delivered “significant efficiencies” to the market. “One of the most dramatic market efficiencies has been seen in the reserves market Ð the back-up electricity to ensure that the entire electricity network is secure. In the combined months of January...

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INDIA: Reliance to shut down unit at Jamnagar refinery for up to 5 weeks

India’s privately owned Reliance Industries could shut down the aromatic unit at its 550,000 b/d Jamnagar refinery for up to five weeks for repairs. The unit affects the production of intermediates like benzene, paraxylene and orthoxylene. However, the output of oil products will continue. According to local media reports, UOP, the US technology licensor, recommended...

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CHINA: Sinopec to reshuffle management this month Ð report

BEIJING (XFN) – China Petroleum & Chemical Corp (Sinopec) (SH A 600028; HK 0386; NYSE SNP) is expected to undertake a management reshuffle this month, as chairman Li Yizhong is expected to be appointed party secretary of the State Asset Management Commission, the South China Morning Post reported, citing industry sources. The commission will be...

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VIETNAM: Soco Intl pretax profit drops 53% to 10.8 million stg on Russian venture sale

LONDON (AFX) – Soco International PLC, an oil and gas exploration and production company, said pretax profit for the year to December 2002 dropped 53% following the sale of its Russian joint venture in 2001. Pretax profit for the year to Dec 31 slumped to 10.8 million stg from 22.9 million stg the previous year,...

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AUSTRALIA: Novus upgraded to ‘marketperform’ from ‘underperform’ – JB Were

SYDNEY (AFX-ASIA) – JB Were has upgraded its short term recommendation on Novus Petroleum Ltd to ‘market perform’ from ‘underperform’ following the release of the company’s 2002 results, despite cutting its earnings forecasts for the company. Novus said its 2002 operating profit after tax fell 26% to A$21 million, while it reported a bottom line...

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PHILIPPINES: First Gas, FGP not entitled to deferred payments on gas purchases – PNOC-EC

MANILA (AFX-ASIA) – State-owned PNOC Exploration Corp (PNOC-EC) said First Gas and FGP Corp are not entitled to deferred payments on their gas purchases from the Malampaya natural gas field. PNOC-EC, which has a 10% interest in the Malampaya, said the Malampaya consortium committed no breach of gas sales and purchase agreements (GSPA) with First...

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PHILIPPINES: President Arroyo defers Petron stake sale, says no suspension of oil deregulation

MANILA (AFX-ASIA) – President Gloria Arroyo said she has decided to defer the government’s sale of its 3.75 million shares or a 40% stake in Petron. The stake sale, expected to raise some 6.5 billion pesos, had been considered by the government earlier to help fund its budget deficit. (US$1=54 peso) Mrs Arroyo said in...

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