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Business News

Will work-from-home affect the demand for Nigerian oil?

The pandemic-related shift to remote work could remove between 1 million and 1.5 million barrels per day from global demand.

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Can 5G change the face of remote work?

Covid has acted like a time machine: it brought 2030 to 2020.” This statement by Loren Padelford, the vice president at Shopify Inc. epitomizes the shift in work cultures globally as a result of the pandemic. More companies and businesses are open and opting for remote work and the use of technology in their daily operations.

The consequence?

Less human interactions, less commute, less travel, and inadvertently less demand for petroleum products.

While writing this article on an almost empty European flight, I began to wonder if life would continue like this. In the short-term, probably, as there have been reports of the third wave in certain European countries. There have been talks of vaccine passports to substitute the constant hassle I go through with taking a COVID-19 test 72 hours before departure along with ‘Passenger Locator Forms,’ a form that tracks arrival’s possible locations just in case of exposure to the virus.

In the long-term, probably not. Humans are by nature, nomadic, and would find it a lot harder staying indoors. In a recent interview, the CEO of Goldman Sachs called “work from home” an aberration. David Solomon, the Chief Executive Officer of the Investment bank said, “I do think for a business like ours which is an innovative, collaborative apprenticeship culture, this is not ideal for us and it’s not a new normal.”

The concern for Nigeria?

Based on data from Statista in 2020, Europe has been Nigeria’s main crude oil trade partner. In Quarter 4 of 2020, the value of export to Europe was estimated at N853 billion ($2 billion). With lockdowns and reports of a third wave, shipments to Europe may continue to decline.

The image below shows the current situation in Europe as lockdowns persist.

Most businesses and office places are adopting work from home till further notice, while most companies will revert to normal after vaccination.

Switch to Asia, Nigeria’s largest destination region of crude oil in Quarter 4 of 2020. According to Statista, oil exports to that region amassed over N880 billion.

Notably, in 2020, the top 9 countries that imported crude oil from Nigeria were:

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India – N1.6 trillion;

Spain – N1.02 trillion;

Netherlands – N989.82 billion;

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South Africa – N947.52 billion;

China – N311.55 billion;

France – N280.39 billion;

Italy – N272.99 billion;

Portugal – N243.74 billion;

Turkey – N239.9 billion.

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The top export location, India, which recently pleaded with OPEC to increase outputs to stabilize market prices, appears to be handling its exit from COVID well with declining daily new case figures. This could be a stroke of good fortune for Nigeria, but for Europe, it might take more time.

S&P Global Platts believes that the pandemic-related shift to remote work could remove between 1 million and 1.5 million barrels per day from global demand, which makes sense because workers and companies have now seen that it is possible to be productive while working remotely, and so, a certain percentage of workers may never go back to daily commuting.

For employers, this translates to lower operational costs as items such as large and expensive office spaces, employee transport and feeding allowances, time lost in daily commuting, and other costs gradually fizzle out. For many workers, it means only one thing: no more commute.

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According to analysts at Raymond James, a diversified financial services firm, the assumption is that “vehicle fuel consumption in 2021 will be impacted by 1.6 million BPD versus pre-COVID levels, all else held constant, with the impact decreasing to 400,000 BPD in 2022.

When it comes to jet fuel consumption, the firm believes a slowdown in business travel will mean 2 million BPD of demand loss in 2021, before recovering slightly to 800,000 BPD in 2022.

All these would certainly impact crude oil. Although prices may be high, demand may not follow the same trajectory. The policymakers at the helm of Nigeria’s affairs need to be cautious and prepare for a possible shift in the work culture of the nation’s trading partners.

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Dapo-Thomas Opeoluwa is an Investment Banker and Energy analyst. He holds a degree in MSc. International Business, Banking and Finance from the University of Dundee and also holds a B.Sc in Economics from Redeemers University. As an Oil Analyst at Nairametrics, he focuses mostly on the energy sector, fundamentals for oil prices and analysis behind every market move. Opeoluwa is also experienced in the areas of politics, business consultancy, and investments. You may contact him via his email- [email protected]

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Appointments

Standard Bank Group appoints Yinka Sanni as new Chief Executive of Africa Regions

Yinka Sanni has been appointed as Standard Bank Group’s Chief Executive of Africa Regions.

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Stanbic IBTC declares N10.4 billion interim dividend

The Standard Bank Group has announced the appointment of Yinka Sanni as the new Chief Executive of Africa Regions.

This announcement was made by the Group in a post shared via its official LinkedIn account. The bank revealed that Sanni will be replacing Sola David-Borha who is retiring after 31 years of distinguished service to the group.

His appointment will play an integral role in driving the growth of the Standard Bank Group in Africa further in the years ahead.

He is expected to build on the work of David-Borha, a renowned professional who played a key role in growing the Group’s Africa Regions portfolio in terms of capacity, market share and contribution to the group’s headline earnings.

What you should know

  • Yinka Sanni is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Stockbrokers of Nigeria.
  • He has served in key positions within the Stanbic Group, as the Chief Executive of Stanbic IBTC Holdings PLC, Chief Executive of Stanbic IBTC Bank PLC, Deputy Chief Executive of the Bank and Executive Director, Corporate & Investment Banking of the Bank.
  • He was also the pioneer Chief Executive, Stanbic IBTC Pension Managers Limited and the pioneer Chief Executive, Stanbic IBTC Asset Management Limited.

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Corporate Press Releases

P2P crypto marketplace, Bitzlato (BZ) partners with Lemonade Finance to ease money transfers across Africa

The partnership will enable users on the BZ platform to buy and sell bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies on the marketplace at zero cost.

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Bitzlato (BZ), the latest P2P Crypto Exchange to enter the African market, has added Lemonade.Finance, a borderless payment platform for Africa, as a payment method to its platform.

Lemonade Finance provides 100% digital payment experience for Africans to seamlessly participate in the global economy from anywhere in the world without any hassle or regardless of where they are from.

The partnership will enable users on the BZ platform to buy and sell bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies on the marketplace at zero cost.

Users in Nigeria will now be able to send Nigerian Naira (NGN) to MPESA at 0% transaction fee.

Speaking about this partnership, Ridwan Olarere, CEO, Lemonade Finance, said:

“We are excited to partner with such an innovative company like Bitzlato to connect more Africans through payment. Many Africans living on the continent face many difficulties when making payments as remittance companies charge high fees and are time-consuming. We are now providing our users with a cost-effective way of sending money to Ghana, Kenya, Uk and Europe.”

Commenting on the opportunities this provides to crypto traders on the BZ platform, Mike Lunov, CEO, BZ, said:

“This partnership will provide a much-needed gateway that enables the markets we serve to seamlessly interact with each other in a borderless and open environment. We seek to break the barriers that presently exist for cross border transfers and enable our users to generate value through the opportunities that accrue from cryptocurrencies trading. The innovation exhibited by the Lemonade platform, and the brilliance of its team assures users of top-notch, secure and reliable transfers going forward.”

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According to BZ, during the first month, BZ will refund commissions in manual mode while using Lemonade Finance, but this will be automated at the end of this period.

Following this partnership, BZ is now looking to partner with merchants in the crypto space especially in Nigeria, Ghana, South Africa that have a steady flow of Nigerian Naira (NGN) to increase liquidity on the platform.

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Take advantage of the new Lemonade Finance payment method on BZ, which offers zero transactional fees for money transfers from Nigeria into Kenya. Sign up on BZ and start trading crypto easily today.

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