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The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) is reportedly set to acquire equity in six private refineries under development in Nigeria to ensure national energy security. The Group Managing Director of NNPC Alhaji Mele Kyari, said this is in line with the Federal Government’s policy that stipulates the mandatory participation of the Corporation in any privately-owned refinery exceeding 50,000 barrels per day.
The NNPC, in line with the directive, has been able to identify a minimum of six refineries in which it plans to gain equity participation, with five refineries still in the development phase. Furthermore, the NNPC is revisiting the corporation’s strategy in the local oil refining sector to strengthen domestic refining capacity, guarantee national energy security, and becoming a net exporter of petroleum products in the future.
The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, H.E. Timipre Sylva inaugurated the largest technological incubation center in Africa, Unicorn, in Lagos State, Nigeria. The center aims to impact more than one million young tech entrepreneurs over the next ten years. At the inauguration ceremony, held at their site in Yaba, the Minister commended those involved in promoting the project who decided to invest in developing human capacity and nurturing the tech and innovation start-ups. He added that facilities such as the Unicorn Incubation Campus remain vital in the ecosystem of technology development infrastructure especially as they become linked to oil and gas innovations.
Valaris announced it had won a drillship contract with TotalEnergies in Ivory Coast. The contract is for the ultra-deepwater drillship Valaris DS-12. Total E&P Côte d’Ivoire B.V, an Ivory Coast subsidiary of the TotalEnergies, will use the drillship to drill one well offshore the Ivory Coast. The contract is expected to start in the third quarter of 2021. Valaris did not share the financial details of the contract. The Valaris DS-12 drillship was delivered in 2014 from the DSME shipyard in South Korea. The rig was previously owned by Atwood Oceanics, under the name Atwood Achiever. The rig’s name changed to Ensco DS-12 after Ensco bought Atwood in 2017. In 2019, Ensco merged with Rowan, to create Ensco Rowan. During the same year, the name of the offshore drilling company changed to Valaris, with the Ensco DS-12 now becoming Valaris DS-12.
On June 3, oil prices had minimal change, following two straight days of gains that took oil futures to highs not seen in a year, after weekly U.S. crudes stocks fell sharply while fuel inventories rose more than expected. The U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures rose as high as $69.40 after gaining 1.5% in the previous session, while Brent crude futures fell 23 cents to $71.12 a barrel, a 0.3% loss, by 11:27 AM EST (15:27 GMT). The U.S. Energy Information Administration’s weekly report for June 2 showed a fall in U.S. crude inventories by 5.1 million barrels for the week ending May 28, compared with analysts’ expectations for a decrease of 2.4 million barrels.
Oil prices have risen in recent days on expectations from investors, forecasters, including the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies stating that oil demand will exceed supply in the second half of 2021. OPEC+ agreed on June 1 to continue with plans to ease supply curbs through July, giving oil prices a boost, in anticipation of improved consumption. The OPEC+ meeting lasted 20 minutes, the quickest in the group’s history, suggesting strong compliance among members and the conviction that demand will recover once the COVID-19 pandemic shows sign of abating. Also supporting prices was a slowdown in talks between the United States and Iran over Tehran’s nuclear program, which reduced expectations of Iranian oil supplies returning to the market.