FROM SCRATCH NEWSWIRE

SCAVENGING THE INTERNET

Archive for the ‘OPEC’ Category

OIL HIGHER IN ASIA ON OPEC CHIEF’S COMMENTS – OPEC SAYS PREPARED FOR ‘FURTHER MEASURES’ TO SHORE UP CRUDE PRICES AFTER REVIEWING MARKET

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on January 16, 2009

2009-01-14

Middle East Online

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE MIDDLE EAST ONLINE’

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE MIDDLE EAST ONLINE’

Advertisements

Posted in ASIA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, OPEC, PETROL, RECESSION, REFINERIES - PETROL/BIOFUELS | Leave a Comment »

ECUADOR SUSPENDS OUTPUT OF FOREIGN OIL FIRMS TO COMPLY WITH OPEC CUTS – THE ECUADORIAN GOVERNMENT HAS DECIDED TO SUSPEND OIL PRODUCTION BY ITALY’S AGIP AND FRANCE’S PERENCO, BOTH OF WHICH OPERATE IN THE AMAZON REGION, TO COMPLY WITH NEW OPEC CUTS

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on January 11, 2009

Friday, January 09, 2009

EFE News Services

PUBLISHED BY ‘RIGZONE’

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘RIGZONE’

Posted in COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ECUADOR, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FOREIGN POLICIES, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, OPEC, PETROL, PUBLIC SECTOR AND STATE OWNED ENTERPRISES, RECESSION, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY | Leave a Comment »

CAN OPEC USE OIL AS A WEAPON? – IN THE MID-70s, SHORTLY BEFORE PHYSICAL ELIMINATION FROM THE SCENE, THE LATE KING FAISAL OF SAUDI ARABIA HAD FOREWARNED HENRY KISSINGER, THE WHEELER-DEALER OF THE DAY, THAT IF AND WHEN PUSHED TO THE WALL, ‘WE WOULD PUT OUR (OIL) WELLS TO FIRE AND RETURN TO THE TENTS’

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on January 11, 2009

Sunday, 11 Jan, 2009 – 12:59 PM PST

by Syed Rashid Husain

PUBLISHED BY ‘DAWN’ (Pakistan)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘DAWN’ (Pakistan)

Posted in COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FOREIGN POLICIES, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, OPEC, PETROL, RECESSION, REFINERIES - PETROL/BIOFUELS, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, SAUDI ARABIA, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, WARS AND ARMED CONFLICTS | Leave a Comment »

OIL PRODUCER CUTS OUTPUT AFTER OPEC CALL (Venezuela)

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on January 8, 2009

1:30PM Thursday Jan 08, 2009

Associated Press

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE NEW ZEALAND HERALD’

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE NEW ZEALAND HERALD’

Posted in COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FOREIGN POLICIES, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, OPEC, PETROL, RECESSION, STOCK MARKETS, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, VENEZUELA | Leave a Comment »

OIL PRICES RISE TO $45 AS INVESTORS WAIT TO SEE SIZE OF OPEC OUTPUT CUT

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 17, 2008

December 16, 2008 – 5:56 AM

by Pablo Gorondi – Associated Press

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE STAR TRIBUNE’ (USA)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE STAR TRIBUNE’ (USA)

Posted in COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, OPEC, PETROL, RECESSION | Leave a Comment »

POLITICAL BICKERING, INTERFERENCE IMPERILS KUWAIT’S CRITICAL PETROLEUM INDUSTRY

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 17, 2008

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Agence France Presse

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE DAILY STAR’ (Lebanon)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE DAILY STAR’ (Lebanon)

Posted in BANKING SYSTEMS, CENTRAL BANKS, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, ISLAMIC BANKS, KUWAIT, OPEC, PETROL, RECESSION, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »

OPEC POISED FOR OUTPUT CUT IN BID TO END COLLAPSE OF OIL PRICES

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 17, 2008

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Agence France Presse

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE DAILY STAR’ (Lebanon)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE DAILY STAR’ (Lebanon)

Posted in COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, OPEC, PETROL, RECESSION | Leave a Comment »

OPEC ‘HAS NO OTHER OPTION BUT TO CUT PRODUCTION’

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 16, 2008

December 15, 2008, 23:33

by Leah Bower – Special to Gulf News

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE GULF NEWS’ (Dubai)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE GULF NEWS’ (Dubai)

Posted in ECONOMY, OPEC, PETROL | Leave a Comment »

OPEC CHIEFS HERALD MAJOR OUTPUT CUT TO REBUILD PRICES

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 16, 2008

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

by Agence France Presse (AFP)

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE DAILY STAR’ (Lebanon)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE DAILY STAR’ (Lebanon)

Posted in COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, IRAN, LYBIA, OPEC, PETROL, RECESSION, RUSSIA, STOCK MARKETS, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »

OIL PRICES STEADY AT $44 IN ASIA AS INVESTORS WAIT TO SEE SIZE OF OPEC OUTPUT CUT ON WEDNESDAY

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 16, 2008

December 16, 2008 – 12:10 AM

by Alex Kennedy – Associated Press

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE STAR TRIBUNE’ (USA)

SINGAPORE – Oil prices were steady above $44 a barrel in Asia on Tuesday, a day before investors expect OPEC to announce a big production cut.

Light, sweet crude for January delivery was down 6 cents to $44.45 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange by midday in Singapore. The contract fell overnight $1.77 to settle at $44.51.

Investors are looking to the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, which accounts for 40 percent of global supply, to announce a substantial reduction of output quotas at its meeting Wednesday in Algeria.

OPEC President Chakib Khelil suggested Monday the group may slash as much as 2 million barrels a day, equaling a cut at the cartel’s last Algeria meeting four years ago.

Khelil said that a fair price for oil would be around $70 to $80 per barrel — the benchmark for several OPEC members below which they lose money on production.

Mohammed Al-Aleem, Kuwait’s oil minister, said Monday that OPEC should cut supply to help balance a large market surplus.

“At the very least, a cut should help stabilize the market,” said Gerard Burg, minerals and energy economist with National Australia Bank in Melbourne. “The impact may be relatively muted, but it could add some upward pressure on prices.”

Investors will be watching for evidence OPEC members are adhering to any announced cuts, as exceeding quotas has dogged the organization throughout its history.

“That’s going to be the difficult thing,” Burg said. “OPEC’s cohesiveness has really deteriorated over the last few years because the world was consuming everything it could produce.”

Many OPEC members based their budgets assuming oil prices would be above where they are now. The group’s efforts to bolster prices — including output cuts totaling 2 million barrels a day in September and October — have been ignored by investors preoccupied with the worst economic slowdown to hit developed countries in decades.

Oil prices, which reached a four-year low at $40.50 earlier this month, have fallen about 70 percent since peaking at $147.27 in July.

“The market is still consumed with demand-side factors,” Burg said. “We don’t expect a recovery until the second half of next year, so there’s potential for further negative news to have a dampening affect on the crude market.”

In other Nymex trading, gasoline futures rose 0.16 cent to $1.04 a gallon. Heating oil gained 0.24 cent to $1.46 a gallon while natural gas for January delivery was steady to 5.64 per 1,000 cubic feet.

In London, January Brent crude was steady at $46.36 a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE STAR TRIBUNE’ (USA)

Posted in COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, OPEC, PETROL, RECESSION, SINGAPORE, STOCK MARKETS, THE ARABIAN PENINSULA, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, USA | Leave a Comment »

VIETNAM LOWERS GASOLINE PRICES BY 8 PERCENT AMID DECLINING WORLD OIL PRICE

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 12, 2008

December 10, 2008 – 2:57 AM

Associated Press

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE STAR TRIBUNE’ (USA)

HANOI, Vietnam – Vietnam has lowered gasoline prices by 8 percent as world oil prices hover around $43 a barrel.

The government said Wednesday that effective immediately, the price of gasoline was cut to 11,000 dong (65 cents) per liter. The government also raised import tax from 35 percent to 40 percent.

The government has cut gasoline prices 10 times since they reached a high of 19,000 dong ($1.1) in July when world oil prices hit a record high of nearly $150 a barrel.

Light, sweet crude for January delivery was up 91 cents to $42.98 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange by midafternoon in Singapore as investors looked to an expected OPEC production cut next week to help stabilize prices that have plummeted amid a global economic slowdown.

Vietnam exports about 16 million tons of crude oil each year but has to import all refined oil products. The country’s first oil refinery is scheduled to open early next year.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE STAR TRIBUNE’ (USA)

Posted in COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, GASOLINE, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INFLATION, INTERNATIONAL, OPEC, PETROL, RECESSION, REFINERIES - PETROL/BIOFUELS, SINGAPORE, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, USA, VIETNAM | Leave a Comment »

IRAN OIL OUTPUT OVER 4 MLN BPD

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 10, 2008

Monday, December 6th, 2008

by Michel Rocard

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE ARAB TIMES’ (Kuwait)

TEHRAN, Dec 6, (RTRS): Iran is producing over 4 million barrels of crude per day (bpd), the head of the state oil firm was quoted as saying on Saturday, roughly 250,000 bpd more than an estimate provided by the country’s Opec governor. Iran’s representative to the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, Mohammad Ali Khatibi, said on Thursday the Islamic Republic was pumping at around 3.8 million bpd and was complying fully with its share of the cartel’s oil supply cuts. But Seifollah Jashnsaz, managing director of the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC), said in comments carried by the official IRNA news agency on Saturday: “In view of Opec’s production cut that went into effect at the beginning of November, Iran’s current crude oil production stands between 4,050,000-4,080,000 barrels per day.”

A Reuters survey earlier this week put Iran’s output in November at 3.9 million bpd, a higher figure than the one given by Khatibi but lower than the output cited by Jashnsaz. The reason for the different figures for the crude output of Iran, Opec’s second-largest producer, was not clear and officials were not immediately available for comment. In his Dec. 4 comments to Reuters, Khatibi said Iran had cut 199,000 bpd as required under Opec’s October agreement to reduce supply by 1.5 million bpd. He said Iran was pumping at around 4 million bpd before the October cut.

Khatibi’s comments on compliance were at odds with industry estimates that Iran has met little of its pledge to reduce supply. Opec, source of more than a third of the world’s oil, meets in Algeria later this month to discuss how to halt oil’s fall of more than $100 from its July peak of over $147 a barrel as a global financial crisis hit energy demand in consumer nations. Iran’s Oil Minister Gholamhossein Nozari said last Sunday that the oil market was oversupplied by around 2 million bpd. Opec ministers meeting in Cairo on Nov. 29 deferred a decision on a new oil supply cut amid signs that Saudi Arabia and its Gulf allies were demanding tighter adherence with previous restraints.

Flagged

Delegates in Cairo flagged Iran and Venezuela, who have both urged deeper Opec cuts, as sources of concern on quota compliance.

In Saturday’s IRNA report, Jashnsaz did not mention any figures about Iranian output cuts, but said Iran’s oil production capacity had reached 4.23 million bpd and expressed hope it would rise to 4.3 million by March next year.

Iran’s crude oil export revenue so far in the 2008-09 Iranian year stood at $61 billion, he said, adding its average exports during the year amounted to 2.35 million bpd.

He said output from the Darkhovin oil field, in Iran’s south-west, would increase by 60,000 bpd to 160,000 bpd by the end of the Iranian year that runs to March.

Echoing comments by another NIOC official this week, Jashnsaz said Iran would need around $160 billion for development projects within its oil and gas sector, saying it would have to rely on both domestic and foreign investment.

NIOC’s director of planning, Abdolmohammad Delparish, told a seminar on Thursday that Iran needs investment of that magnitude in the next five years in its oil and gas industry.

Iran is the world’s fourth largest oil producer, but despite sitting on the world’s second biggest gas reserves has yet to become a major gas exporter. Jashnsaz said gas output had risen this year by around 70 million cubic metres to 580 million.

Also:

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia’s state-owned oil company Petronas is not a partner in multi-billion dollar gas deals signed this week between a Malaysian company and the Iranian government, a top company official said on Wednesday.

“We are not aware of what it is all about; all I know is what I read in the media. I can confirm that it has nothing to do with Petronas,” Petronas chief executive officer Hassan Marican told reporters.

Iran’s state television reported on Tuesday that the country had signed gas deals worth $14 billion with Malaysia.

The deals involved a project to produce liquefied natural gas (LNG) and the development of two gas fields, state television said.

The ISNA news agency said the deals were signed on Monday with Malaysia’s SKS group, a private entity linked to Malaysian billionaire Syed Mokhtar Al-Bukhary.

It was not clear if the deals were related to an agreement signed in 2007, the news agency said.

SKS in December last year struck a $16 billion gas development contract with Iran, which boasts the world’s second largest gas reserves after Russia.

Under the 2007 deal, SKS will team up with the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) to develop the southern Golshan and Ferdows gas fields and build plants to produce LNG.

Separately, Hassan said Petronas has not yet finalised its investment in a LNG project in Iran.

“We have not finalised that, there is no further update on the LNG project,” said Hassan.

In July, Petronas said it could not come to a final decision on its investment in Iran’s Pars LNG project due to rising costs and because it had not finalised its discussion with the Iranians.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE ARAB TIMES’ (Kuwait)

Posted in COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FOREIGN POLICIES, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, MALAYSIA, NUCLEAR ENERGY, OPEC, PETROL, RECESSION, RUSSIA, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »

ALGERIA URGES RUSSIA, NORWAY, MEXICO TO JOIN OPEC – Energy minister calls on three countries to join cartel or cut their output to show solidarity to group

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 3, 2008

First Published 2008-12-02 – Updated 2008-12-02 16:05:18

PUBLISHED BY ‘MIDDLE EAST ON LINE’

ALGIERS – Algerian Energy Minister Chakib Khelil, the current president of OPEC, on Tuesday urged Russia, Norway and Mexico to join or cut their crude production to show solidarity with the group.

“What we really want is for these countries to become members of OPEC,” Khelil said on the sidelines of a conference of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries in Algiers, according to APS news agency.

“I don’t see why Russia can’t be a full-fledged member of the organisation. It’s the best way to express solidarity,” he said.

If the three countries refuse to join OPEC, they should reduce oil production, Khelil said.

“We don’t need an agreement to stand by countries that share the same goal. If they have problems (joining OPEC), they should just apply their intended reductions.”

Russia, a top world oil producer, is not a member of OPEC, but has held regular consultations with the organisation.

Russian Deputy Prime Minister Igor Sechin last week said Moscow had prepared a draft memorandum on cooperation with the 13-member cartel.

OPEC secretary general Abdalla Salem El-Badri said Monday the cartel may decide on a “major” output cut when it meets in Oran, Algeria, on December 17.

OPEC has already slashed output twice this year by a total of two million barrels per day in response to plunging prices but fears remain that a global recession could ravage demand for energy.

Oil prices have fallen under 50 dollars a barrel.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘MIDDLE EAST ON LINE’

Posted in ALGERIA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, FOREIGN POLICIES, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, MEXICO, NATURAL GAS, NORWAY, OPEC, PETROL, REFINERIES - PETROL/BIOFUELS, RUSSIA | Leave a Comment »

ARAB ECONOMIES TO GROW DESPITE SETBACKS

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 2, 2008

December 1, 2008 at 9:10 AM EST

OXFORD ANALYTICA – Exclusive – PUBLISHED BY ‘THE GLOBE AND MAIL’ (Canada)

SUBJECT: The impact of the world economic downturn on Arab economies.

SIGNIFICANCE: In contrast to the severity of the downturn in other parts of the world, the Arab world appears likely to experience relatively moderate losses. However, certain countries may be particularly vulnerable.

ANALYSIS: The IMF’s latest downward revisions of growth rate projections for 2009 place Arab countries in third place at 5.3 per cent after China and India at 8.5 per cent and 6.5 per cent respectively, although World Bank figures are somewhat less optimistic. Positive growth prospects reflect two key factors:

Macroeconomic fundamentals are positive, in particular the prospects for sustained investment growth, which will be driven by accumulated oil revenues and continuing oil incomes.

Regional capital markets, which have been hit by the crisis, are among the smallest and least significant in emerging markets.

Investment. Buoyant investment activity is now and will continue to be supported by oil income and wealth: The current account surplus of oil economies is expected to double to some $132-billion (U.S.) in 2008 against $77-billion in 2007.

Arab sovereign wealth funds possess at least $1.53-trillion in assets, with considerably more in reserves and accumulated private wealth.

Despite the slashing of oil revenues due to the present fall in oil prices, accumulated assets are likely to make up the difference from a regional standpoint – although particular countries may suffer.

Intra-Arab foreign direct investment has been rising steadily, from $8.8-billion between 1985-1995, to nearly $17-billion between 1995-2002, to $77-billion between 2002-07, with $14-billion in 2007 alone: FDI accounts for 12 per cent of regional capital formation compared to 7.8 per cent in developing countries as a whole.

GCC investors are now investing around 25 per cent of their oil wealth in the region compared to 15 per cent in 2003.

In oil, gas and energy, $520-billion worth of projects are planned for 2009-2013, down from a projected $650-billion before the crisis; even if only $400-billion worth are financed, $8-billion to $10-billion a month of investment will take place.

The crisis in Europe and the United States will strengthen the need for geographic diversification, and will confirm intra-Arab investments as a key category in Arab portfolios.

Investors will likely diversify away from real estate and tourism into other sectors such as food, transport, and medical diagnostics.

There have been official promises to maintain intra-Arab capital and investment flows, although the use of resources in domestic bailouts may limit the fulfilment of such commitments.

Market losses. The four largest markets – Dubai, Egypt, Kuwait, and Saudi Arabia – have lost up to half of their value, mirroring heavy losses elsewhere. Another four markets – Abu Dhabi, Bahrain, Qatar, and Oman – registered relatively moderate losses of 20-40 per cent. All had fallen from historical highs in summer, 2008.

There are a number of channels of contagion from global financial markets:

Exits by non-Arab investors have most seriously affected the more open Arab stock markets, namely those of Egypt and the United Arab Emirates.

Exposure to the US prime and sub-prime markets has affected players in Kuwait, Qatar and the UAE.

A more significant channel is heightened fear and uncertainty about the unfolding global recession; the region’s markets, whose trends have been dominated by excitement and herd behaviour, joined the global panic.

Negative sentiment overwhelmed the effects of positive fundamentals, including the strong results of many listed corporations for the first half of 2008.

Mitigated impact. Yet there are good reasons to believe that the falls in Arab markets will be less enduring, and have less negative broader impact, than in markets elsewhere:

The fall in OECD financial markets is the most severe in decades; in contrast, wild swings in the region are common.

Arab stock markets are highly volatile, narrow and illiquid; only a small proportion of total capitalization is traded.

The dominance of financial institutions in market indices made their fall in the present crisis inevitable; financials constitute 56 per cent of the S&P’s Pan Arab index, compared to 16 per cent in the Latin America index and 36 per cent for Africa.

Remarkably, the four smallest markets – Beirut, Jordan, Morocco, and Tunis – retained gains, indicating that intra-Arab investments have constituted a successful portfolio diversification strategy.

Arab markets are still constructing operational and regulatory structures. Gaping holes remain in corporate governance rules and practices, and the culture of retail investors is still underdeveloped. In 2007-2008 a series of investigations targeted insider dealings and share manipulation. Fines were handed to listed firms, brokers, and investment companies in Jordan, Egypt, UAE, Saudi Arabia, and Oman. However, the relative unsophistication of markets and their lesser significance in the broader economies has shielded Arab countries from the worst effects of the financial crisis.

Slowdown. The downside risks are not to be underestimated in a deep and complex world crisis: Oil revenues will be dented by declining world demand, forcing oil-rich countries to engage in belt-tightening and possibly threatening FDI flows to other Arab countries.

The cost of finance, in terms of spreads, has already risen to all-time highs, and all types of capital raised are below 2007 levels.

Falls in exports will cause losses across the region; many once-booming industries such as petrochemicals and fertilizers are now faced with sliding markets.

Falls in tourism will hit players such as Morocco, Egypt, and Dubai; falls in remittances will hit North African countries.

Dubai’s fall is likely to be the sharpest, linked as it is to the bursting of an enormous real estate bubble; mortgage lending had quintupled in the last five years, and government debt is high at around $70-billion.

Egypt, which is poor and heavily indebted, is likely to be hit hard by declines in the stock market, oil and gas income, and Suez revenues; even a moderate downturn is likely to feed growing public discontent.

CONCLUSION: Losses on Arab stock markets have wiped out abnormally high returns, but not the prospects of solid positive returns. The region is finally drawing on what has long underpinned East Asian and European growth: domestic and intra-regional investment. Supported by ample reserves and SWF resources, this strength should help the region to weather a world recession. Growth prospects are therefore dented, but remain positive.

From the Oxford Analytica Daily Brief

Copyright 2008 – Oxford Analytica Ltd. All rights reserved.

Founded in 1975, Oxford Analytica’s 1,000+ analysts provide international organizations with monitoring, research and consultancy services that explore the strategic implications of policy, economic, financial, industry, trade and security developments around the world.

www.oxan.com

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE GLOBE AND MAIL’ (Canada)

Posted in BANKING SYSTEMS, CENTRAL BANKS, CHINA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ECONOMY - USA, EGYPT, ENERGY, EUROPE, FINANCIAL CRISIS - USA - 2008/2009, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, FOREIGN POLICIES, IMF, INDIA, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, ISLAMIC BANKS, ISLAMIC DEVELOPMENT BANK, LYBIA, MACROECONOMY, MOROCCO, NATURAL GAS, OPEC, PETROL, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, STOCK MARKETS, THE ARABIAN PENINSULA, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, THE LAST DAYS OF GEORGE WALKER BUSH - 2008/Jan. 2009, USA, WORLD BANK | Leave a Comment »

SAUDI ARABIA’S KING WANTS US OVER A $75-PLUS BARREL

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 2, 2008

Sunday, November 30, 2008 – Added 1d 22h ago

by Associated Press PUBLISHED BY ‘THE BOSTON HERALD’ (USA)

CAIRO, Egypt – Saudi Arabia’s king says the price of oil should be $75 a barrel, much higher than it is now, but his oil minister Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates, left, attends a meeting with King Abdullah bin Abdul al-Saud at the king´s hunting lodge in Saudi Arabia to discuss current issues in the Middle East Jan. 17, 2007
indicated yesterday that no measures will likely be taken until OPEC meets again next month.

Saudi Oil Minister Ali Naimi said that the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries will “do what needs to be done” to shore up falling oil prices when the group meets Dec. 17 in Algeria, but for now it was “too early.”

Other ministers at the hastily convened OPEC meeting in Cairo did not entirely rule out production cuts, including Libyan oil official Shokri Ghanem, who, ahead of the meeting, said “all options are open.”

But Naimi, whose country is the world’s largest oil producer, said the bloc needs to wait until the Algeria meeting to assess the impact of earlier production cuts.

Naimi’s comments came after Saudi King Abdullah told the Kuwaiti newspaper Al-Seyassah in an interview published Saturday that oil should be priced at $75 a barrel.

“We believe the fair price for oil is $75 a barrel,” he said, without explaining how the price could be raised.

The price of crude stood at about $147 a barrel in mid-July.

On Friday, the U.S. benchmark West Texas Intermediate crude for January delivery was trading at about $54 per barrel.

© Copyright 2008 Associated Press. All rights reserved.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE BOSTON HERALD’ (USA)

Posted in COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ECONOMY - USA, ENERGY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, FINANCIAL CRISIS - USA - 2008/2009, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FOREIGN POLICIES, FOREIGN POLICIES - USA, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION - USA, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, OPEC, PETROL, RECESSION, REFINERIES - PETROL/BIOFUELS, SAUDI ARABIA, THE LAST DAYS OF GEORGE WALKER BUSH - 2008/Jan. 2009, THE PRESIDENCY - USA, USA | Leave a Comment »

ASIAN MARKETS MIXED ON OUTLOOK FOR CHINA, US

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 1, 2008

1 Dec 2008, 1220 hrs IST, AGENCIES

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE ECONOMIC TIMES’ (India)

SEOUL, South Korea: Asian stock markets were mixed on Monday as investors digested signs that the U.S. holiday shopping season got off to a tepid start over the key Thanksgiving weekend.

While Japan’s market fell, stocks in Hong Kong and mainland China rose on expectations of further measures by the Chinese government to boost the economy after last month’s big interest rate cut and multibillion dollar stimulus package.

“These are the appetizers of a full meal, “said Winson Fong, managing director at SG Asset Management in Hong Kong, which overseas about $3 billion in equities in Asia, referring to those earlier measures. “It’s not the end.”

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index was up 297 points, or 2.1 per cent, to 14,185.8, continuing its rally from last week, when it rose nearly 10 per cent. China’s Shanghai Composite index was up 0.4 per cent to 1,879.66.

India’s benchmark Sensex index also rose, climbing 2.4 per cent to 9,305.94, reflecting at least some investor confidence in the wake of the terrorist attacks in Mumbai, where the stock exchange is located, that left at least 174 people dead.

Stocks in Australia, Singapore and South Korea also fell. Early reports from the U.S. showed modest gains in retail sales on Black Friday, the traditional start of the American holiday shopping season, but business appeared to fall off during the remainder of the weekend, considered one of the most important of the year for U.S. retailers. Also, sales gains seemed to come at the expense of profits as companies slashed prices to lure shoppers.

‘We don’t know if it’s driven by sales or if U.S. consumers are getting their confidence back,’ said Fong.

Investors around the world are paying close attention to the weekend sales figures for clues on the strength of the American economy, a vital export market.

According to preliminary figures released Saturday by ShopperTrak RCT, a research firm that tracks total retail sales at more than 50,000 outlets, sales rose 3 per cent to $10.6 billion on Friday from the same day a year ago. A more complete sales picture of how the Thanksgiving shopping weekend fared won’t be known until Thursday when the nation’s retailers report November same-store sales, or sales at stores opened at least a year.

Stocks in Thailand rose, led by energy stocks, amid hopes that the country’s political crisis will be resolved soon. Anti-government protesters have occupied Bangkok’s two main airports for nearly a week, cutting off air freight, stranding tourists and causing millions of dollars in lost sales. The benchmark SET index was up 0.8 per cent at 405.09.

In Tokyo, the benchmark Nikkei 225 stock average lost 123.34 points, or 1.5 per cent, to 8,388.93, retreating after advancing 7.6 per cent last week. Investors sold exporters as the yen strengthened, which erodes exporters’ overseas earnings.

‘Despite a rise on Wall Street last Friday, sentiment was downbeat as investors were bracing for weak U.S. manufacturing data due out later in the day,’ said Kazuhiro Takahashi, an equity strategist at Daiwa Securities SMBC Co. Ltd., referring to the Institute for Supply Management’s report for November.

Wall Street advanced for a fifth straight session Friday, the first time the Dow Jone industrial average to accomplish that feat since July 2007. For the week, the Dow climbed 9.7 per cent for the week and the broader Standard & Poor’s 500 index jumped 12 per cent.

U.S. stock futures were down, suggesting Wall Street would open lower Monday. Dow futures were up 59 points, or 0.7 per cent, to 8,763, and S&P futures were up 6.8 points, or 0.8 per cent, to 888.5.

Oil prices fell to near $53 a barrel after OPEC declined to cut production at an informal meeting in Cairo on Saturday. Light, sweet crude for January delivery was down $1.13 to $53.30 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange by midday in Singapore.

In currencies, the dollar declined to 95.22 yen from 95.48 yen in New York late Friday. The euro was little changed at $1.2685.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE ECONOMIC TIMES’ (India)

Posted in CHINA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, CONSUMERS AND PSYCHOLOGICAL FACTORS, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ECONOMY - USA, ENERGY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, HONG KONG, INTERNATIONAL, OPEC, PETROL, SOUTH KOREA, STOCK MARKETS, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, USA | Leave a Comment »

PRESIDENT OF UNITED ARAB EMIRATES DOWNPLAYS IMPACT OF FALLING OIL PRICES AHEAD OF OPEC MEETING (Dubai)

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on November 27, 2008

Last update: November 26, 2008 – 6:36 AM

Associated Press

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates – The president of the United Arab Emirates is Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (left) holds a bilateral meeting with Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahya, President of the United Arab Emirates, at the Royal Guest Palace in Riyadh, Saudi Arabiadownplaying concerns about falling oil prices ahead of an emergency OPEC meeting later this week.

The Emirates is one of the world’s top oil producers.

Sheik Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan says fluctuations in the price of crude are nothing new. He says the Gulf nation has lived through periods were prices were below where they are today.

The sheik spoke in an interview with Egypt’s influential Al Ahram newspaper. The Emirates state news agency WAM on Wednesday provided a transcript of the interview.

Khalifa says the Emirates is “closely monitoring” oil market dynamics and working with partners in OPEC “to face any negative impacts on the stability of world markets.”

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘STAR TRIBUNE’ (USA)

Posted in COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, DUBAI, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INTERNATIONAL, OPEC, PETROL, RECESSION, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES | Leave a Comment »

VENEZUELA, RUSSIA SAY OIL PRICES MUST STABILISE

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on November 27, 2008

Posted to the web on: 27 November 2008

Sapa-AP

CARACAS – Venezuela will support Opec oil production cuts until prices increase, Oil Minister Venezuela's Oil Minister Rafael Ramirez speaks with the media in Caracas, Feb. 8, 2008Rafael Ramirez said yesterday.

During a visit by Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, he said Venezuela will support Opec production cuts of 1-million-barrels per day at Opec’s upcoming meeting on Saturday. But if new cuts are not enough to increase prices, “we will keep cutting until the market stabilises,” he said.

President Hugo Chavez has said he’s proposing Opec countries consider setting a price range for oil to stabilise the global market.

“Let’s look for a band between $80 and $100; we’re thinking about that,” Chavez said Monday.

“We think that price would be a fair price for oil.” Venezuela is a founding member of Opec, which cut production by 1,5-million-barrels per day last month to boost prices.

While Russia is not an Opec member, Chavez has often spoken of the necessity to strengthen relations between Opec and Russia. Russian President Dmitry Medvedev did not respond directly when asked if he would support Chavez’s price band, but said Russia wants “just and stable” oil prices.

“These don’t need to be really low or really high” he said through an interpreter. In Nymex trading, prices for light, sweet crude for January delivery rose slightly to settle at $54,44 a barrel yesterday. Oil prices have recently fallen to a third of their July value.

Among other things, yesterday’s prices were affected by speculation that Russia – one the world’s largest crude producers – may join Opec in output cuts, Energy Minister Sergei Shmatko said in New Delhi on Tuesday, Press Trust of India news agency reported.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘BUSINESS DAY’ (South Africa)

Posted in COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, FOREIGN POLICIES, FUELS, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, OPEC, PETROL, RECESSION, REFINERIES - PETROL/BIOFUELS, RUSSIA, VENEZUELA | Leave a Comment »

GHANEM: OPEC MAY MEET NOV 29 TO DISCUSS OIL MARKET

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on November 17, 2008

15/11/2008 – 14:44:00

The Chairman of National Oil Corp. (NOC) said Thursday that the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Organization of Petroleum Exporting CountriesCountries, or OPEC, indeed could hold a meeting in Cairo at the end of November.

“We may have a meeting in Cairo,” Shukri Ghanem said.

The meeting could take place on the sidelines of a meeting of the Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries, known as OAPEC, which is taking place in the Egyptian capital on Nov. 29, he said.

“Since we are about 10 or nine…who are members of OAPEC, who are also members of OPEC, that happen to be in Cairo, so why not consult also on the market situation?” he said.

After Ghanem’s statement oil prices rose earlier in the day after another OPEC source mentioned the likely emergency output meeting later this month.

Before that prices had slumped to a three-and-a-half-year low point close to $ 50 a barrel in London trading, owing to weaker energy demand caused by a global economic slowdown.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE TRIPOLI POST’ (Libya)

Posted in COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, EGYPT, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, OPEC, RECESSION | Leave a Comment »

OPEC REDUX: RESPONDING TO THE RUSSIAN-IRANIAN GAS CARTEL

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on November 15, 2008

Published: November 14, 2008

Ariel Cohen (Middle East Times) by Ariel Cohen (Middle East Times) (*)

MOSCOW – Steadily and stealthily, a natural gas cartel has emerged over the last seven years. On Ariel Cohen, the usually obnoxious 'scarecrow' with a PhD ...Oct. 21 in Tehran, the Gas Exporting Countries’ Forum (GECF) agreed to form a troika which will direct the future cartel. Russia, Iran, and Qatar announced they will form a yet-unnamed group “to coordinate gas policy.” The troika will meet to coordinate and control close to two-thirds of the world’s gas reserves and a quarter of its gas production.

Russia prefers to coordinate energy policies with Tehran, recognizing that together they control roughly 20 percent of the world’s oil reserves and about half of global gas reserves, offering tremendous geo-economic power.

The United States should create an international coalition of energy consumers to oppose energy cartels. The U.S. Congress should also allow energy exploration in the Arctic, the Rocky Mountains, and along the continental shelves and expand cooperative gas ties with Canada.

Russia’s Global Gas Strategy

In the tight global energy market, Russia clearly appreciates the bargaining power that its energy resources provide, as it attempts to control energy exports from the New Independent States, such as Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan. Russia also has strengthened its ties to Iran, Venezuela, Libya, and other energy exporters. Recently, Moscow also launched a “charm offensive” on OPEC.

Russia is playing a sophisticated game to maximize its advantage as the leading gas producer with the largest reserves on the planet as well as the second largest oil exporter.

Russia’s approach was gradualist. Moscow had never openly shown enthusiasm about a gas cartel but waited for an opportunity to launch one. Yet, the cartel reportedly was a brainchild of the Russian prime minister and former president, Vladimir Putin.

Russia’s approach was also stealthy. Instead of announcing the cartel prematurely and spooking consumer countries, it quietly put the component parts into place. Until the Tehran declaration, Russia was able to appear reasonable.

At the Doha meeting in April, members of the GECF agreed to discuss dividing the consumer markets between them, particularly in Europe. Russia and Algeria are already major players there, and Iran may join them in the next decade. This will clearly challenge the European Union’s energy liberalization and gas deregulation policy, which took effect on July 1.

Geopolitical Clout

The troika and GECF members are planning to “reach strategic understandings” on export volumes, schedules of deliveries, and the construction of new pipelines. They plan to explore and develop gas fields and coordinate startups and production schedules. Despite protestations to the contrary, the GECF has all the trappings of a nascent cartel, and the troika includes its founding members. These founders will expand cooperation beyond their relationship through the GECF and drag other gas producers with them.

The new group will provide its three leaders with greater geopolitical advantage. If this new cartel expands, Russia and Iran will gain clout over Eurasian gas suppliers, such as Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, and Uzbekistan.

Major gas producers such as Iran, Russia, Qatar, Turkmenistan, Brunei, and Venezuela have one feature in common: a democracy deficit. All three members of the new cartel share this dubious quality. Just like OPEC, the gas cartel will be a force that can be used to challenge and possibly weaken market–based democracies through energy prices and wealth transfer. Such a cartel may cut deals with undemocratic large-scale consumers, such as China, while forcing the West to pay full price.

Coordinated Global Action Needed

The U.S. George W. Bush administration barely reacted to the Tehran and Doha meetings. Officials express concern, but only in private. The European Commission merely stated that it opposed price-fixing cartels in principle.

As the case of OPEC demonstrates, closing markets to competition, promoting national oil companies, and limiting production results in limited supply and higher oil prices. Gas will not be different.

What the U.S. Can Do

The United States should open its vast natural gas resources onshore and offshore to further exploration and production and encourage its neighbors in Canada, Mexico, and the Caribbean to do the same.

The next administration should work with the European Union, Japan, China, India, and other countries to prevent the cartelization of the gas sector. This can be accomplished through cooperation with the International Energy Agency, which China and India should be invited to join, and by applying anti-trust legislation worldwide against state-owned companies that are actively involved in cartel-like behavior in energy markets.

Finally, the United States should work closely with those within GECF who oppose Russian-Iranian domination, including Azerbaijan, Canada, the Netherlands, and Norway. The National Security Council and the National Economic Council should take the lead in developing this policy. Unless buyer solidarity is translated into action, energy consumers and economic growth will suffer worldwide.

(*) – Ariel Cohen, Ph.D., is senior research fellow in Russian and Eurasian Studies and International Energy Security in the Douglas and Sarah Allison Center for Foreign Policy Studies, a division of the Kathryn and Shelby Cullom Davis Institute for International Studies, at The Heritage Foundation.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘MIDDLE EAST TIMES’ (Egypt)

Posted in COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, COMMONWEALTH OF INDEPENDENT STATES, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FUELS, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, LYBIA, NATURAL GAS, OPEC, PETROL, QATAR, RUSSIA, THE ARABIAN PENINSULA, THE EUROPEAN UNION, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, VENEZUELA | Leave a Comment »

ASIAN SHARES, OIL TUMBLE AS GLOBAL RECESSION FEARS MOUNT

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on November 13, 2008

November 13, 2008

by Rafael Nam

HONG KONG, Nov. 13 (Reuters) – Asian shares fell on Thursday to their lowest this month on A woman walks by an electric stock average index board in Hong Kong Thursday, Nov. 13, 2008. Hong Kong's stock index has plunged over 6 percent in early trade, tracking Wall Street's sharp losses overnight. The blue chip Hang Seng index fell 923.83 points, or 6.63 percent, to 13015.28 points in the morninguncertainty about whether the United States can succeed in its massive banking rescue and as Intel Corp.’s revenue warning stoked corporate earnings worries.

European markets also opened lower and were set for another rocky ride as the Germany announced its economy officially entered recession, contracting for a second straight quarter.

Japan’s Nikkei average dropped 6.3 percent. Other markets also took a beating: South Korea, Australia, and Hong Kong fell 5-6 percent each. Taiwan and Singapore dropped 3-4 percent each.

However, Shanghai gained 1.7 percent on hopes China’s spending plan would spur economic growth.

Evaporating confidence in the global economy led crude prices to hit a 22-month low of $ 55 a barrel, even after OPEC President Chakib Khelil indicated the oil-producing cartel may cut supply again. Metals such as platinum also dropped.

In London, oil prices steadied on Thursday after falling close to 50 dollars a barrel as the International Energy Agency warns of sliding energy demand around the globe.

With prices tumbling to the lowest levels in almost two years and down almost two-thirds in value compared to record highs of above 147 dollars a barrel in July, analysts said OPEC was certain to call an emergency meeting to announce further cuts to output.

Adding to the gloom was the forecast of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development that leading industrialized nations appear to be in a ‘’protracted’’ downturn, with the US, Japanese and eurozone economies likely to shrink next year.

The OECD predicted a return to modest growth in 2010 but warned that the United States, the world’s largest economy, would suffer a whopping 2.8 percent contraction in fourth quarter 2008.

It called for further government stimulus measures and steps to shore up financial markets but also warned against any move that would distort competition or threaten the operation of open markets.

The Japanese yen retreated against the euro and the dollar after soaring on Wednesday on a flight-to-quality. Other Asian currencies fell, while Australia’s central bank stepped in to support its tumbling Australian dollar.

The MSCI index of Asian stocks outside Japan dropped 5.7 percent after at one point hitting its lowest level since Oct. 30.

Asian shares followed Wall Street lower after the US Treasury on Wednesday backed away from using a $ 700 billion bailout fund to buy bad mortgage debt from lenders to focus instead on buying stakes in the US banks themselves.

The shift in focus not only created uncertainty, but came after a raft of recent gloomy economic data worldwide.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘MANILA BULLETIN’ (Philippines)

Posted in ASIA, BANKING SYSTEMS, CHINA, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, FINANCIAL CRISIS - USA - 2008/2009, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, HONG KONG, INTERNATIONAL, JAPAN, OPEC, RECESSION, SOUTH KOREA, STOCK MARKETS, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, USA | Leave a Comment »

OIL UP OVER 4 PCT, TOPS $64 ON CHINA STIMULUS, G20

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on November 10, 2008

by Fayen Wong – Reuters – (Editing by Clarence Fernandez)

Published: Sunday, November 09, 2008

PERTH (Reuters) – Oil leapt more than $3 to over $64 a barrel on Monday, fueled by top exporter Saudi An oil pump is seen on the shore near Santa Cruz del Norte, Cuba June 5, 2008. REUTERS - Claudia DautArabia’s plans to cut December supplies to Asia, a weaker dollar and hopes that global economies’ plans to lift growth could avert recession.

Saudi Arabia has told refiners in Asia it would cut December supplies by 5 percent, providing the most visible evidence yet that it is adhering to OPEC’s agreement last month to reduce output.

U.S. light crude for December delivery rose $2.96, or 4.55 percent, to $64.00 a barrel by 7:59 p.m. EST, after rising as much as $3.26. London Brent crude rose $1.85 to $59.20.

The proposals made at the G20 meeting and the relief package out of China really helped the markets this morning,” said Mark Pervan, a senior commodities analyst at the Australia & New Zealand Bank.

“The message over the weekend was supportive and it is clear that governments around the world will do all it takes to prevent a deep global recession.”

At the G20 group’s annual meet in Brazil, finance ministers and central bank governors representing 90 percent of the world’s economy vowed to take all necessary measures to get financial markets back on their feet and counter the credit crisis.

China went a step further and launched a huge stimulus plan on Sunday worth nearly $600 billion, kicking off what could be a round of big spending or interest rate cuts by leading economies to stave off a recession in many countries.

China’s solid government spending package to boost domestic demand is “good news” that will help the global economy ride out the financial crisis, the International Monetary Fund’s managing director said.

The U.S. currency weakened broadly after data on Friday showed the U.S. economy shed more jobs than expected in October. But the yen fell against the dollar and euro on Monday as Asian shares were lifted by strong Wall Street gains and by China’s launch of its huge stimulus plan.

Oil lost nearly 10 percent last week and dipped below $60 the previous week, its lowest since March 2007, after a string of dismal economic data from the United States sharpened fears of a protracted global recession and growing U.S. energy stockpiles underscored falling demand in the world’s top energy consumer.

Government data on Friday showed U.S. employers cut payrolls by 240,000 in October. In addition, the Labor Department said the U.S. unemployment rate shot up to 6.5 percent from 6.1 percent in September, the highest since March 1994.

Oil’s tumble from July highs has already spurred OPEC to rein in supply from November 1, and some members of the cartel are talking of reducing production further.

OPEC will cut oil output again if the trend toward lower prices and slowing demand growth are unchanged when the group meets in December, Iran’s OPEC Governor Mohammad Ali Khatibi told Reuters on Sunday, adding to comments by Venezuela’s oil minister Rafael Ramirez last week that OPEC should act again to reduce output by at least 1 million barrels per day (bpd).

Iran’s Khatibi added that the credit crisis and economic slowdown could shave as much as 3 million bpd from global crude demand.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘OTTAWA CITIZEN’ (Canada)

Posted in ASIA, CHINA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, DOLLAR (USA), ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, G20, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, IRAN, OPEC, PETROL, SAUDI ARABIA, THE ARABIAN PENINSULA | Leave a Comment »

CRISE MANTERÁ PETRÓLEO EM BAIXA, DIZ PRESIDENTE DA OPEP – Previsão de Chakib Khelil leva em conta abalo nos mercados e baixa do dólar frente a outras moedas

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on November 2, 2008

02/11/2008 | 16h41min

O ministro da Energia argelino e presidente em exercício da Organização dos Países Exportadores de Chakib Khelil - Algerian Energy and Mines Minister, gestures during a press conference at the governmental newspaper El-Moudjahid's press center in the center of Algiers 20/10/2007. Khelil, who is the vice president of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), said, then, that petrol prices would stay high until the second trimester of 2008Petróleo (Opep), Chakib Khelil, disse neste domingo que os preços da commodity podem continuar sua tendência de baixa caso persista a crise financeira e o dólar não se recupere frente a outras divisas.

— Tudo depende da situação econômica mundial. Caso continue se deteriorando fica claro que a demanda de petróleo percebida pelo mercado diminuirá, o que manterá a tendência de baixa — disse Khelil a uma rádio argelina.

No entanto, o ministro não descartou que o preço do petróleo, estabelecido em dólares, possa voltar a subir “se a moeda americana se debilitar em relação a outras”.

— É o impacto de todos estes elementos o que vai decidir o preço do petróleo a curto prazo — assinalou.

Em todo caso, o presidente da Opep previu que os preços se recuperarão em dois ou três anos, “já que há um desinvestimento e muitos projetos (no setor petrolífero) foram suspensos”.

Segundo ele, a decisão da Opep adotada na última reunião de Viena de cortar a produção “vai precisar de muito tempo para ter seus efeitos” sobre o preço do petróleo, já que o mercado não integrou ainda a redução da oferta.

Khelil explicou que vários países, entre eles Argélia, Emirados Árabes, Irã e Nigéria, anunciaram já o corte de sua produção e que se espera que os demais membros da Opep informem a seus clientes “para avaliar o impacto no mercado da decisão adotada em Viena”.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘PORTAL CLIC RBS’ (Brasil)

Posted in AFRICA, ALGERIA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, CURRENCIES, DOLLAR (USA), ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, NATURAL GAS, NIGERIA, OPEC, PETROL, THE ARABIAN PENINSULA, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES | Leave a Comment »

IRAN CUTS OIL PRODUCTION AS PRICES CONTINUE PLUMMETING

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on October 31, 2008

date: 31 10, 2008

TEHRAN, OCT. 31 (BNA) — IRANS OIL MINISTER GHULAM HOSSEIN SAID, IN LINE WITH A RECENT DECISION TAKEN BY THE ORGANIZATION OF THE PETROLEUM EXPORTING COUNTRIES (OPEC) TO REDUCE OIL SUPPLY, IRAN WILL START CUTTING 199000 BARRELS A DAY OF ITS OIL PRODUCTION AS OF TOMORROW, NOVEMBER 1, 2008.

IN ADDITION, TEHRAN, IN ITS CAPACITY AS MEMBER OF THE OPEC OIL PRICES CONTROL COMMITTEE, WILL MONITOR OPECS MEMBER-STATES COMMITMENT TO THEIR STAKES, THE MINISTER ADDED. REGARDING A PROPOSAL BY OPEC SECRETARY GENERAL TO HOLD AN EMERGENCY MEETING BEFORE DECEMBER GATHERING, THE MINISTER SAID SUCH PROPOSAL WOULD BE PUT IN EFFECT IN CASE PRICES CONTINUE SLIDING.

MTQ 31-OCT-2008 16:10

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘Bahrain News Agency’

Posted in ASIA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INTERNATIONAL, IRAN, OPEC, PETROL | Leave a Comment »

OPEC AGREES TO CUT OIL PRODUCTION – OIL FALLS DESPITE PRODUCTION CUTS

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on October 24, 2008


Page last updated at 11:59 GMT, Friday, 24 October 2008 12:59 UK

World oil prices have fallen further, undermining oil cartel Opec’s efforts to steady prices by cutting output by 1.5 million barrels a day.

The decision to cut about 5% of the cartel’s total daily output came after an emergency Opec meeting in Vienna.

But the move did not halt the sliding oil price, with US sweet light crude dropping more than $3 to $64.75. London Brent fell a similar amount.

Recession fears have pulled oil down from a high of $147 a barrel in July.

Dramatic collapse

In a statement after the meeting, Opec said it had cut output because supply outpaced demand, and prices had collapsed dramatically in recent weeks.

The cut will take effect from 1 November.

The 13-nation producers group, responsible for producing about 40% of the world’s total supply, said it would continue to provide the market with the crude oil volumes required by consumers.

Analysts had expected Opec to cut output by at least one million barrels a day and some producers – such as Venezuela and Iran – wanted greater cuts.

More cuts?

OPEC President Chakib Khelil said because Opec members produce about 300,000 barrels a day more than the official quota of close to 29 million barrels, the total reduction by the end of the year would be about 1.8 million barrels a day.

Mr Khelil rejected the suggestion that the decision would hurt the global economy.

“There’s not going to be any impact on inflation, there’s not going to be any impact on growth.”

Opec oil ministers said that they would review their decision at their next meeting in December, leaving open the possibility of further cuts beforehand if necessary.

Revenue worries

Ahead of the meeting, some of the cartel’s members called for a reduction in output to stop the fall in prices: Venezuela wanted production to be cut by a million barrels a day, while Iran had called for a cut twice that size.

The two countries are thought to be most in need of a relatively high oil price – around $100 a barrel – to finance government spending, says the BBC’s economics correspondent, Andrew Walker.

Iran relies almost entirely on its oil exports for government revenue: for every dollar off the price of a barrel of oil, the country loses roughly $1bn a year in revenue.

But British Prime Minister Gordon Brown warned that any reduction made in a bid to push up oil prices would be “scandalous” at a time when major economies were close to tipping into recession.

Motorists benefit

Oil prices hit an all-time high of $147 a barrel in July, but have since fallen back steadily.

Prices now stand at levels not seen since last spring, amid fears a global economic recession will cut demand.

The price that motorists have been paying for petrol at forecourts has been falling recently.

A price war has broken out among leading UK supermarkets with Asda, Sainsbury’s, Tesco and Morrisons all announcing cheaper petrol on Friday.

But some observers believe moves to reduce production could reverse that trend.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘BBC NEWS’ (UK)

Posted in COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INTERNATIONAL, OPEC, PETROL | Leave a Comment »

OPEC GATHERS IN EMERGENCY MEETING AS OIL PRICES EVAPORATE; TALK OF 2M BARREL PRODUCTION CUT (Algeria)

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on October 24, 2008


Last update: October 23, 2008 – 1:28 PM

by George Jahn, Associated Press

VIENNA, Austria – Iran and Venezuela on Thursday urged OPEC to quickly slash output and stem a Workers check the size on pipes at the Freeze Wall test site at Shell Oil Company's Mahogany Oil Shale Research Project near Meeker, Colo., on Wednesday, May 31, 2006. Shell Exploration & Production Co., which is poised to snap up a 160-acre experimental lease on federal lands rich in oil shale, gave a delegation of senators a progress report Wednesday on its efforts to bake shale oil from the ground in western Colorado (AP Photo - Ed Andrieski)steep slide in prices that has left crude at its cheapest in 15 months — and some member countries scrambling to balance their books.

But OPEC’s power to raise prices by cutting supply may be fading amid a global economic crisis that has evaporated demand for oil.

The latest weekly report from the U.S. Department of Energy shows that demand has fallen in 38 of the past 42 weeks. U.S. demand is down nearly 10 percent during the past four weeks year on year. The U.S. still consumes one out of every four barrels of oil produced.

“This is not a supply issue,” said trader and analyst Stephen Schork. “OPEC can affect supply but they can’t touch the demand side, which right now is a house of cards.”

Iranian oil minister Gholam Hossein Nozari told reporters, on the eve of an emergency OPEC meeting to address evaporating prices, that a cut of “two million (barrels per day) will stabilize” the market. And Rafael D. Ramirez, his Venezuelan counterpart, also left little doubt on where he stood.

“We have to take some action now, now,” said Ramirez, telling reporters that the 13 OPEC oil ministers meeting Friday will reach “consensus to take a very, very, very fast action.”

Both he and Iraq’s oil minister said their nations may be forced to rethink or cut spending next year.

Other oil ministers of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries also said output cuts had to be on the table during their meeting Friday — but were well aware that if production is tightened too much, the resulting price spikes could knock a wobbling global economy even further out of kilter.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘STAR TRIBUNE’ (Argélia)

Posted in AFRICA, ALGERIA, ASIA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INTERNATIONAL, IRAN, NATURAL GAS, OPEC, PETROL | Leave a Comment »