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Financial crisis hits global oil investment


FACTBOX-Financial crisis hits global oil investment

Thu Nov 6, 2008 5:04pm EST

Nov 6 (Reuters) – The growing financial crisis and plunging energy prices have forced oil companies to scale back spending and delay projects, with expensive ventures in the Canadian oil sands hardest hit.

Below is a list of projects that have been delayed or scaled back in recent months, as well as other related news.

Nov. 6 – Canadian Natural Resources Ltd (CNQ.TO: QuoteProfileResearchStock Buzz) slows spending on second phase of Horizon oil sands project for 2009 after first phase costs rise to C$9.7 billion, up 42 percent from 2004 estimate. Company, citing low oil prices and high costs, also scraps timelines for phase 2, which would lift output to 250,000 bpd from 110,000.

Nov. 6 – ConocoPhillips (COP.N: QuoteProfileResearchStock Buzz) and Saudi Aramco halt bidding on the construction of a 400,000 barrel per day joint- venture Yanbu refinery in Saudi Arabia, citing uncertainties in the financial and contracting markets. Saudi Aramco previously sought to renegotiate contracts for equipment for Yanbu, as well as for a refinery joint venture with France’s Total SA(TOTF.PA:QuoteProfileResearchStock Buzz).

Nov. 5 – Saudi Arabia may renegotiate contracts for long- term oil and gas field projects, an oil official told the International Oil Daily. The giant Moneefa oilfield expansion and the Karan gas scheme had been put out to bid when the cost of labor and materials were soaring.

Nov. 5 – Sunoco Inc (SUN.N: QuoteProfileResearchStock Buzz) to save $375 million by scrapping upgrade of refinery in Tulsa, Oklahoma; still looking to sell the refinery, which accounts for just under a tenth of the U.S. company’s 910,000 barrels per day capacity.

Oct. 30 – Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSa.L: QuoteProfileResearchStock Buzz) said it would delay its investment decision on a second expansion of its Athabasca oil sands project.

Oct. 29 – Thai refiner and petrochemical company IRPC IRPC.BK reviews a $1.5 billion investment plan. Has delayed a refinery expansion to 260,000 barrels per day and cut its run rate by 10,000 barrels per day to about 160,000-170,000.

Oct. 23 – Suncor Energy Inc (SU.TO: QuoteProfileResearchStock Buzz) delays construction of oil sands upgrader for C$20.6 billion Voyageur expansion by one year to 2013. Expansion boosts production from Suncor’s oil sands operations near Fort McMurray, Alberta, to 550,000 bpd from 350,000.

Oct. 23 – Petro-Canada (PCA.TO: QuoteProfileResearchStock Buzz) mulls deferring upgrader for proposed C$21 billion Fort Hills oil sands project to save up to C$10 billion. Move would mean partners build mine and extraction plant and sell as much as 160,000 barrels a day raw bitumen into the open market starting 2011. Decision before year-end.

Oct. 23 – Nexen Inc (NXY.TO: QuoteProfileResearchStock Buzz) and Opti Canada Inc (OPC.TO: QuoteProfileResearchStock Buzz) delay decision on second phase of Long Lake oil sands project to some time in 2009. Expansion would double production of synthetic crude to 120,000 barrels a day. First phase cost C$6.1 billion and is now just starting up.

Oct. 23 – Value Creation Group construction of C$4 billion Heartland upgrader near Edmonton, Alberta, reported halted. First phase would have processed 77,500 barrels a day of bitumen into synthetic crude. Privately held company has regulatory approval for plant with 260,000 bpd capacity.

Oct. 22 – Baker Hughes Inc (BHI.N: QuoteProfileResearchStock Buzz) expects about 200 oil and gas drilling rigs in North America would be idled during the fourth quarter because of the tighter credit markets and the declines in oil and gas prices. (Writing by Braden Redall; Editing by Walter Bagley and Andre Grenon)


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