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Energy

Nigerian LNG to increase exports, returns profits despite weak gas prices 

The gas firm has been able to sell the excess supply at a discount in the spot market. 

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Nigeria will most likely increase the export of its Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) in August and September to the global market if the demand of the commodity goes up despite the crash in prices which is near record lows. 

However, in the meantime, the government-owned Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) company has concluded plans to maintain its current supply level to the global market. This is contrary to what some other exporters like the United States and Australia seem to be doing following low prices. 

According to a report from Bloomberg, Nigeria exported over 1.8 million tons in the month of June, which is more than last year’s monthly average of 1.7 million tons. 

Some of the country’s buyers have effected clauses in their long-term which allows them to take fewer shipments than was originally agreed. The gas firm has been able to sell the excess supply at a discount in the spot market. Over 50% of Nigeria’s exports in May were sold in Asia as against the about 30% that was sold last year. 

Natural gas exports have slowed in June as the coronavirus pandemic has negatively affected global demand. Most of the multibillion-dollar projects in natural gas export terminals have been either halted or delayed as a result of the disruptions by the pandemic. 

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The damage to the gas trade goes well beyond the Middle East as it is affecting similar businesses in Australia, which is reputed to be the world’s largest exporter of LNG and the United States. With the global exports down by 6.3% from the previous year, only a few exporting countries like Qatar and Algeria, have been able to increase output. 

The positive for Nigeria is that the production cost at its LNG facility in Bonny island is so low that it can still turn a profit despite the weak spot prices. The facility has been about the lowest costs when compared to similar projects around the world. 

Nairametrics had reported that the NLNG just signed the engineering, procurement and construction contract for its train 7 project, which is a major gas expansion plan. The project is expected to boost the country’s LNG output by more than 30%. 

The NLNG is a consortium between the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Royal Dutch Shell, Total and Eni. The project is coming at a difficult time when LNG prices in Asia and gas prices in Europe have hit a record low due to the coronavirus pandemic which has weakened demand.   

Chike Olisah is a graduate of accountancy with over 15 years working experience in the financial service sector. He has worked in research and marketing departments of three top commercial banks. Chike is a senior member of the Nairametrics Editorial Team. You may contact him via his email- [email protected]

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Armstrong Chibuzo Ikpa

    July 5, 2020 at 7:13 am

    What is the secret to Nigeria LNG ‘s low operational cost during this pandemic. What are they doing differently?

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Energy

Plan to overhaul Nigeria’s Power grid attracts investors – Siemens

The project is aimed at achieving 25,000 megawatts of electricity in the country by 2025.

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German engineering giant, Siemens, said its multi-billion dollar deal to revamp Nigeria’s Power infrastructure has gained the interest of investors.

This was disclosed by the company’s Nigerian CEO, Onyeche Tifase, who also noted that Siemens aims to implement similar strategies it used in Egypt that saw electricity generation in the North African country grow by over 40%

The Backstory: Nairametrics reported last year that Nigeria had allocated the first N61 billion for its Electrification Road Map in partnership with Siemens AG. This followed a July 2019 agreement between both parties.

The Nigerian electrification project has three phases. The project is aimed at achieving 25,000 megawatts of electricity in the country by 2025.

In May, President Muhammadu Buhari directed the Ministries of Power, Finance, and the Bureau of Public Enterprise (BPE) to conclude the nation’s engagement with Siemens AG over the regular power supply.

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Last month, Nigeria approved the sum of N8.64 billion as part of counterpart funding for the Presidential Power Initiative (PPI), which is also known as the Siemens Project. The PPI funding structure includes:

  • 85% from a consortium of banks, guaranteed by the German government through credit insurance firm, Euler Hermes.
  • 15 % of FG’s counterpart funding.
  • 2–3 years moratorium.
  • 10–12 years repayment, at concessionary interest rates.

Tifase said that the project would upgrade existing power substations and install distribution lines and transformers to Nigeria’s electrical grid, adding that the project has made potential foreign investors see investment opportunities in Africa’s largest economy.

Our ability to deliver all the automation of distribution, transmission and generation has boosted investors’ confidence.

Oil and gas companies that had stepped back because of a lack of benefits are reconsidering,” she said.

Nigeria losses 2% of its annual GDP to power failure. Siemens plans to upgrade Nigeria’s transmission capacity to 7,000 megawatts in the first phase of the project as the World Bank also approved a $750 million loan in June to finance efficient metering of Nigeria’s grid.

Apart from the World Bank, the project is also financed by German banks including Deutsche Bank and Commerz bank with supervision from the German government.

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Energy

NNPC opens bid for repairs of pipelines and depots on a finance and operate basis

The project is expected to be operated on a public-private partnership basis.

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NNPC, Pipeline Vandalism: Stakeholder collaboration, critical to tame menace - Kyari, Nigeria explains when it will fully comply with OPEC+ output cut

The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) declared open on Tuesday, August 11, bids by interested private investors to repair the pipelines and depots that are serving the refineries.

These pipelines, built almost 4 decades ago, are very critical in the successful movement of crude oil to the country’s 3 refinery complexes located in Port Harcourt, Kaduna and Warri, and the subsequent movement of the finished petroleum products to the consumers.

The pipelines, which according to NNPC are in dire need of comprehensive repairs, have experienced years of incessant theft and vandalism as well as ageing.

READ MORE: Refinery operations still loss-making: Capacity utilisation of the four refineries still 0% 

This project is expected to be operated on a public-private partnership basis as the bidders are expected to finance and execute the project, then operate for an agreed number of years before transferring back to the NNPC. In other words, the bidders for the extensive repairs of these pipelines would have to finance them independently and operate for a defined period in order to recover their investment costs with throughput tariffs.

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It must be noted that this model is similar to the one that had been in place by the state oil giant for the refineries. The NNPC had also announced plans to get private investors to invest in the repair of the 3 refineries on a repair and operate basis, as they do not want to be involved in the management of these refineries.

The NNPC Group Managing Director, Mele Kyari, had said that the ultimate plan for these refineries was to allow it to run on the LNG model, where the shareholders would be free to decide on the fate of these refineries going forward.

READ MORE: NNPC states why it failed to fix refineries, to build 200,000 capacity refinery

The refineries, which have only run sporadically, were shut down by NNPC earlier this year while awaiting repairs and upgrade. These 2 projects are expected to be handled separately according to information made available on Tuesday.

In addition, the new pipelines would need intrusion detection systems, as well as deep burial, to stop theft or vandalism. The deadline for the submission of these bids is due by September 18.

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Commodities

Five oil majors reduce value of their assets by $50 billion in Q2

Energy demand at one point was down by more than 30% globally.

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Five oil majors reduce value of their assets by $50 billion in Q2

Five oil majors (including Exxon Mobil and British Petroleum) reduced the value of their assets by $50 billion in Q2, 2020. They also reduced their production rates as the COVID-19 pandemic caused a downward trend in energy demand.

What this means: The cut in asset valuations and reduction in crude oil production by these oil majors showed the depth of damage the COVID-19 pandemic caused on the global energy sector in Q2, 2020.

Energy demand at one point was down by more than 30% globally and still remains below pre-pandemic levels.

READ MORE: Respite for Nigeria as Exxon Mobil and Shell lose $1.8 billion arbitration award  

Some of these conpanies’ executives said they took these austerity measures because they expect demand to continue to be on the downward trend in the meantime. This is in view of the fact that people around the world are traveling less, even as many global industries are not in full capacity. The pandemic has already killed more than 700,000 people.

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Of those five oil majors, only Exxon Mobil (XOM.N) did not book sizeable impairments, Reuters reported. However, an ongoing re-evaluation of Exxon Mobil plans could lead to a reasonable amount of its assets being impaired, and signal the removal of 20% or 4.4 billion barrels of its oil and gas reserves.

READ ALSO: Oil prices drop to 21-year low as demand and storage crises persist

Oil major BP (BP.L) took a $17 billion hot. It said its plans in the coming years would be a focus on renewables and fewer fossils.

About two weeks ago, Nairametrics reported how Exxon Mobil and Chevron posted their worst losses in modern history, as the COVID-19 pandemic and a glut in crude oil reduced the demand for energy products in the second quarter of 2020.

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