Oil and Gas Industry Roundup: April 2017

April has been a busy month for the world of Oil and Gas, with investments being made in the North Sea by Asia, the UK is leading on North Sea projects, and President Trump has expanded oil drilling to formerly restricted areas.

To make sure you’re up to date with the latest oil and gas news, we have provided you with a handy round-up of the industry’s top stories in our new monthly bulletin.

Investments in North Sea Oil


The North Sea is expected to be heading for a final oil boom, resulting in an increase in investments. According to an article in the Chronicle, North Sea investment fell to £100m last year, a record low, from £14.6bn in 2014.

The oil slump greatly affected the UK economy, with many businesses unable to profit, some having to significantly lower costs with the loss of staff, and others having to refocus their efforts on other industries. However, it is now believed that the worst of the oil slump is over, with investments in new technologies, engineering skills, and opportunities being sourced in the extreme sea West of Shetland.

According to a report by Oil Industry News, the falling premium charged for North Sea oil has resulted in China becoming a significant consumer. OPEC production cuts have created a record demand from Asia for European oil as it strays from its usual Middle East supply.

30 Projects Expected in North Sea by 2020


Optimism in the North Sea continues as it is expected to see £45bn invested in approximately 30 crude oil and natural gas projects, which should be operating by 2020.

Research done by Globaldata shows that the UK is leading the revival of oil and gas with 19 projects, followed by Norway and Denmark. The UK is expected to lead in gas production, with Norway dominating in oil production.

According to the Oil and Gas Authority, the majority of UK North Sea projects have been typically delayed and over budget over the last five years. However, the projects expected to be completed in 2016 are estimated to cost around half as much as those in 2013. This shows that improvements and investments have been made in UK companies to be more cost efficient.

Luis Pereira, the upstream analyst for GlobalData, said: ‘The key planned projects in the North Sea are expected to contribute 690 thousand barrel of oil per day to global crude production and about 1,255 million cubic feet per day to global gas production in 2020.’

Trump Signs Order to Drill in Arctic


President Donald Trump signed an executive order to expand oil and gas exploration by drilling in the Arctic and opening other federal areas. Trump is going against environmentalist’s concerns by upping offshore drilling in an attempt to reduce reliance on foreign oil and to create more jobs. 

“Today,” he said, “we’re unleashing American energy and clearing the way for thousands and thousands of high-paying energy jobs.”

The Arctic Ocean and US-owned areas of the Atlantic were already indefinitely off limits to oil and gas drilling and leasing under Obama’s orders. Interior Secretary, Ryan Zinke, is working on a plan to review all of the restrictions and work on negotiating areas where the US might be able to use for drilling undiscovered oil.

Diana Best of Greenpeace said that opening new areas to offshore oil and gas drilling would be a mistake: “Scientific consensus is that the vast majority of known fossil fuel reserves – including the oil and gas off U.S. coasts–must remain undeveloped if we are to avoid the worst effects of climate change,” she said.


We hope you enjoyed our first oil and gas industry round-up. We will be bringing you the latest stories every month, so join us again in May for the next bulletin on oil and gas.

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