Inpex sees Iran oil project delay

Trade Arabia
Tokyo – Leading Japanese producer Inpec Corp’s flagship Iranian oilfield project is being delayed by the slow removal of landmines from the area, but will not be affected by growing political tensions between Tehran and the West, the company’s top executive said.

The company is under no pressure to slow or withdraw from the billion-dollar Azadegan field, by far the biggest project on its books, Inpec President Naoki Kuroda said.

“The development will be delayed slightly because the removal of landmines has not been completed yet,” Kuroda said in an interview. He declined to give details on when drilling could begin, but media reported it would start this year.

Azadegan, estimated to hold the world’s second-biggest single oil reserve at 26 billion barrels, is located near the Iraq border and 86 per cent of the area has been cleared, he said. Estimated to cost up to $1.7 billion, according to Asahi newspaper, it is one of the biggest foreign investments in Iran.

Inpec, 36 per cent-owned by the Japanese government and with a modest production portfolio concentrated in Indonesia, was thrust into the spotlight in February 2004 when it agreed with Iran to develop Azadegan despite opposition from the US.

An Iranian government official said at the time the agreement was announced that plans were for southern Azadegan to pump 150,000 barrels per day (bpd) by mid-2008 and reach 260,000 bpd by early 2012. Kuroda said production would begin three and a half years after development gains, indicating 2009 at the earliest. …
(20 January 2006)

Gas woes hobbling Aussie ammonium plant

Rick Wilkinson, Oil and Gas Journal
MELBOURNE — High construction costs, rising natural gas prices, and a failure to acquire enough gas feedstock has caused Melbourne-based petrochemical company Plenex Ltd. to withdraw from a proposed $900 million (Aus.) ammonium plant on the Burrup Peninsula of Western Australia.

Plenex, a wholly owned subsidiary of Plenty River Corp. Ltd., has been trying to establish a plant in the area based on natural gas feedstock from the North West Shelf for 10 years.
The company says the failure to secure gas supplies is a direct result of the rapidly increasing export demand for LNG from the region.
(20 January 2006)

Gulf Report: Destruction, Spills and 17% of Production Still Shut-in When Hurricane Season Hits

US Minerals Management Service MMS has just released its analysis of the effects of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita on oil and gas production in the Gulf of Mexico (GOM), detailing the destruction of 115 oil platforms and the damage of 52 others; the damage of 183 pipelines, 64 of those major pipelines larger than 10″ in diameter; and 418 “minor” pollution incidents. (A minor incident is less than 500 barrels of oil spilled that doesn’t reach the coastline.)

The overall damage caused by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita to oil and gas production has shown them to be the greatest natural disasters to oil and gas development in the history of the Gulf of Mexico (GOM), according to US Minerals Management Service Regional Director Chris Oynes. …
(21 January 2006)

Norways Statoil closes production on five fields

Rolleiv Solholm, Norway Post
Statoil has closed down oil and gas production on the Aasgard B(photo), Mikkel, Kristinn, Visund and Nome fields due to bad weather and accidents.

The total daily production on the closed fields is normally 140,000 barrels of oil, 118,000 barrels of condensate and around 48 million cubic metres of gas, according to

With today’s oil prices, Statoil stands to lose NOK 60 million a day on the oil production alone.

The production on Aasgard B has been in difficulties since a fire last week damaged an exhaust system. In the early hours of Thursday the Visund platform had to be closed down because of a gas leak, and the oil production on the Norne Field has been severely restricted because of the rough weather.
(20 January 2006)