‘Grotesque greed’: UN chief Guterres slams oil and gas companies | Oil and Gas News

UN Secretary-Common Antonio Guterres urges governments to tax oil and fuel corporations’ earnings amid the power disaster.

United Nations Secretary-Common Antonio Guterres slammed the “grotesque greed” of oil and fuel corporations and their monetary backers and urged governments globally to “tax these extreme earnings” to assist essentially the most weak folks.

“It’s immoral for oil and fuel corporations to be making file earnings from this power disaster on the backs of the poorest folks and communities, at an enormous value to the local weather,” Guterres advised reporters on Wednesday.

The 2 largest United States oil corporations – Exxon Mobil Corp and Chevron Corp – plus British-based Shell and France’s TotalEnergies mixed earned practically $51bn in the newest quarter, nearly double what the group introduced in for the year-ago interval.

“I urge all governments to tax these extreme earnings, and use the funds to assist essentially the most weak folks by means of these tough occasions,” Guterres stated.

“And I urge folks in all places to ship a transparent message to the fossil gas business and their financiers: that this grotesque greed is punishing the poorest and most weak folks, whereas destroying our solely widespread residence,” he stated.

Politicians and client advocates have criticised the oil corporations for capitalising on a worldwide provide scarcity to fatten earnings and gouge customers. US President Joe Biden stated in June that Exxon and others have been making “more cash than God” at a time when client gas costs surged to data.

Final month, Britain handed a 25 % windfall tax on oil and fuel producers within the North Sea. US lawmakers have mentioned the same thought, although it faces lengthy odds in Congress.

Guterres stated Russia’s battle in Ukraine and the local weather breakdown have been stoking a worldwide meals, power and finance disaster.

“Many growing international locations – drowning in debt, with out entry to finance, and struggling to get well from the COVID-19 pandemic – might go over the brink,” he stated. “We’re already seeing the warning indicators of a wave of financial, social and political upheaval that would go away no nation untouched.”

Algeria plays balancing act as Europe tries cut Russian gas | Russia-Ukraine war News

Because the Russia-Ukraine conflict rages on, European Union members are going through a slew of power safety dilemmas.

Depending on Russia for 40 % of its fuel imports, Italy is trying to cut back this reliance – and shortly – by turning to different international locations whereas accelerating its transfer in the direction of renewables.

Prime Minister Mario Draghi and the pinnacle of the Italian multinational oil and fuel firm ENI travelled to Algeria in April to signal a preliminary power deal.

Then, final month, Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune visited Rome to finalise ENI’s settlement with Algeria’s state-owned Sonatrach.

Below the settlement, Algeria is to step by step enhance fuel flows to Italy by way of the Transmed pipeline.

Whereas Algeria can finally play a helpful position in serving to Italy cut back its dependence on Russian fuel, Italian policymakers have a number of obstacles to beat.

In 2010, Algeria was Italy’s prime fuel provider however because the North African nation needed to meet rising home demand, exports to Italy have since dropped.

In 2013, Russia grew to become Italy’s primary fuel provider, offering Italy with twice as a lot fuel as Algeria did.

Final yr, Russia equipped Italy with 28.988 billion cubic metres (bcm) of fuel, in contrast with Algeria’s 22.584bcm.

Algeria might reroute exports to assist Italy and different European international locations wishing to wean themselves off Russian fuel, a transfer made easier given Tunisian imports of Algerian fuel have decreased with Algiers making exports to Italy the next precedence.

But Riccardo Fabiani, North Africa challenge director for the Worldwide Disaster Group, instructed Al Jazeera that technical, reasonably than political, hurdles imply Algeria can in all probability, at most, reroute solely 5-10bcm to Italy and the remainder of Europe.

“Home demand for fuel continues to rise in a short time and there aren’t any important new tasks coming on-line within the subsequent years that might enhance [Algeria’s] manufacturing. If something, whole fuel manufacturing is more likely to barely lower as strain at previous fields diminishes,” mentioned Fabiani.

The dynamics ensuing from elevated East-West bifurcation might put extra strain on Algeria to navigate the Ukrainian battle fastidiously, in opposition to the backdrop of the Algiers-Moscow partnership.

There might be rising issues in Europe about future fuel imports from Algeria benefitting Moscow, contemplating the North African nation’s important navy purchases from Russia.

Finally, Algeria, a rustic which prioritises overseas coverage independence, is making an attempt to strike a fragile stability in boosting power exports to EU international locations whereas sustaining its defence relationship and strategic partnership with Moscow.

Since February 24, Algerian officers have sought to maintain a level of equidistance between the West and Russia.

For instance, in early Could, Russia’s chief diplomat Sergey Lavrov travelled to Algeria simply earlier than Lieutenant Normal Hans Werner Wiermann, head of the NATO Worldwide Army Workers, paid a go to.

As a regional heavyweight and former colony, Algeria doesn’t take nicely to orders from different capitals.

“The roots of this balancing act have to be discovered within the non-alignment motion, the place Algeria was on the forefront, which additionally appears a protected overseas coverage selection for a lot of international locations within the Maghreb and the creating world – a 3rd solution to escape the spiralling and polarisation stemming from the battle in Ukraine,” Umberto Profazio, an affiliate fellow on the Worldwide Institute for Strategic Research and Maghreb analyst on the NATO Defence School Basis, instructed Al Jazeera.

The battle for Africa’s final colony

A stronger Algerian-Italian power relationship has ramifications for the Maghreb and Southern Europe.

Final yr, President Tebboune halted fuel flows from his nation to Spain by way of Morocco amid an intense row.

On June 8, Algeria suspended its 2002 treaty of friendship and cooperation with Spain in response to Madrid endorsing Morocco’s 2007 autonomy plan for Western Sahara in March. That had been a transfer Spain made to fix fences with Morocco after bilateral relations suffered when the Polisario’s Brahim Ghali obtained COVID-19 therapy in a Spanish hospital in April 2021, and the following Ceuta disaster.

Will Algeria attempt to use power to strain European governments into adopting more and more Algeria-aligned positions on Western Sahara?

“Algeria desires to be heard and considered by its European counterparts, which have been beneath rising strain from Morocco to renegotiate their relations and assessment their positions on Western Sahara,” mentioned Fabiani.

“Vitality is certainly a supply of leverage for Algeria and Moroccan diplomats recognise that they can not count on all Algerian gas-dependent international locations in Europe to undertake [Rabat’s] stance on this battle, which is why there may be little strain on Italy, for instance, to alter its place on Western Sahara.”

Nonetheless, Algeria’s leverage over European international locations vis-à-vis Western Sahara has limits.

If Algiers would try to “blackmail” its consumers to alter positions on Western Sahara, it might threat jeopardising its position as a dependable power supplier, in keeping with Fabiani.

“European governments want reliable power exporters and are unlikely to tolerate any blatant exploitation of power ties for political functions.”

Whereas turning to Algeria for a strengthened power relationship, Rome will doubtless need to pay extra consideration to Western Sahara, being cautious to not upset neither Algiers nor Rabat.

“Italy has not taken a definitive place on the Western Sahara file in order to have the ability to transfer extra freely than Spain in relations with Morocco and Algeria,” mentioned Giuseppe Dentice, the pinnacle of the MENA Desk on the Heart for Worldwide Research and instructing assistant on the Catholic College of the Sacred Coronary heart in Milan.

Supporting the Polisario is a cornerstone of Algeria’s overseas coverage whereas Morocco views the Western Sahara battle as its existential difficulty. However for Italy, this dispute will in all probability change into a diplomatic headache greater than anything.

Oil extends four weeks of gains amid tight supply | Oil and Gas News

The rise in power prices has contributed to rampant inflation, stoking investor concern progress will gradual.

By Bloomberg

Oil prolonged 4 weeks of positive aspects amid tight gas provides and a weaker greenback, although elevated costs are fanning considerations that the world financial system could also be heading for a recession.

West Texas Intermediate futures topped $111 a barrel whereas gasoline and diesel costs have rallied to data forward of the beginning of the US driving season in a few week. The immediate unfold for Brent crude jumped to a seven-week excessive, with crude provides constricted by the boycott of Russian shipments, and product markets strained as refining capability fails to maintain up with rebounding demand.

The rise in power prices has contributed to rampant inflation, prompting central banks to lift charges and stoking investor concern progress will gradual. The Biden administration is contemplating tapping a little-used emergency diesel gas reserve to mitigate the provision crunch amid Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, in response to a White Home official.

Global benchmark Brent climbs as a gauge of US currency eases

The top of the Worldwide Power Company and India’s oil minister, talking on the World Financial Discussion board in Davos, issued warnings on the chance of excessive costs.

“We might even see costs even going greater, being far more risky and turning into a significant threat for recession for the worldwide financial system,” IEA Govt Director Fatih Birol stated in an interview with Bloomberg TV from Davos.

His sentiments had been echoed by Indian oil and fuel minister, Hardeep Singh Puri, who stated that a number of of his nation’s neighbors are in “extreme dire straits” due to rallying costs. “Let’s make no mistake: oil at $110 a barrel constitutes a problem for the complete world.”

Oil has surged this yr on rising demand and the complicated world fallout from Russia’s invasion. Cash managers have additionally boosted bullish crude bets.

In remarks reported on the weekend, Saudi Arabia signaled it would proceed to help Russia’s function within the OPEC+ group of producers, undermining US-led efforts to isolate Moscow for its invasion of Ukraine, the Monetary Occasions stated. The dominion hoped to work out an settlement with OPEC+ which incorporates Russia, Power Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman advised the newspaper.

Weaker Greenback

An added carry for crude got here from a weakening greenback, which makes the commodity cheaper for holders of different currencies. The dollar was decrease on Monday following a drop of 1.4% final week, probably the most since November 2020.

On the similar time, China has imposed a collection of painful lockdowns to quell Covid-19 outbreaks, hurting Asia’s largest financial system. In Shanghai, officers have laid out the standards to categorize elements of the business hub as low-risk for Covid-19 as they appear to finish a two-month lockdown, with no new circumstances exterior quarantine being reported. Beijing, nonetheless, reported a file variety of circumstances, reviving concern that the capital could face a lockdown.

Costs:

  • WTI for July supply rose 1% to $111.12 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Trade at 1:37 p.m. in London.
  • Brent for July settlement added 0.8% to $113.48 a barrel on the ICE Futures Europe trade.

Oil markets stay in backwardation, a bullish sample that’s marked by near-term costs buying and selling above longer-dated ones. The distinction between WTI’s two nearest December contracts, for this yr and in 2023, was close to $13 a barrel, up from about $11 a barrel a month in the past.