Energy Comments Publications

OIES researchers publish in peer-reviewed academic journals as well as producing or authoring policy briefs, technical reports, and op-eds. Below is a selection of non-OIES publications by OIES staff.

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  • Geopolitical shifts and China’s energy policy priorities

    By: Michal Meidan

    At the end of February, the China Energy Research Programme at the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies hosted its first ‘China Day’, bringing together programme sponsors alongside a number of experts to discuss some of the key trends in China and their implications for energy policies and markets. At the outset, discussions during the day […]

  • $2 gas in Europe is here: who will blink first?

    By: Mike Fulwood

    In October last year the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies (OIES) published an Energy Comment which considered the possibility of $2 gas in Europe during 2020. Remarkably we now have $2 gas before the winter has ended. The month ahead index for March for TTF is $2.91 per MMBtu and for NBP was $2.88 per […]

  • Force majeure notices from Chinese LNG buyers: prelude to a renegotiation?

    By: Agnieszka Ason , Michal Meidan

    In early February, as the Chinese government imposed quarantines and travel restrictions on large parts of the country to stem the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), China’s largest LNG importer, CNOOC invoked force majeure on cargoes. On 5 March 2020, PetroChina reportedly issued force majeure notices to some of its suppliers of piped gas and […]

  • The coronavirus: petrochemicals’ perfect storm

    By: John Richardson

    Markets continue to grapple with the impact of the coronavirus outbreak on China’s economic growth and demand for commodities. But given that China is now at the heart of global manufacturing supply chains—which in turn fuel demand for petrochemicals—the coronavirus outbreak and the ensuing collapse in economic activity are weighing on both a large importer […]

  • When China sneezes…

    By: Michal Meidan

    2020 looked to be off to a good start for China. But as the Year of the Pig ended, celebrations to welcome the Year of the Rat were marred by the outbreak of the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV). Beijing’s efforts to control the spread of the virus are set to weigh on economic activity as well […]

  • The Soleimani Effect: A Game-Changer for Iraqi Crude Dynamics?

    By: Ahmed Mehdi

    With the market having shrugged off the latest escalation between the United States and Iran, some of the aftershocks of recent events have heightened the risk of future US-Iran rivalry playing out in Iraq – OPEC’s second largest producer and a key source of oil supply growth out to 2030. Next month’s decision by Washington […]

  • Four misconceptions about China’s oil demand in 2019

    By: Michal Meidan

    In 2019, markets were bracing for a slowdown in China’s oil product demand growth, but grappling to quantify it given the uncertainty surrounding the US-China trade negotiations. At the same time, with the start of two new mega-refineries, markets were expecting strong crude demand, alongside a deluge of product output and exports. In this comment, […]

  • The Dilemma Continues: OPEC choices amid high uncertainty

    By: Bassam Fattouh , Andreas Economou

    OPEC is faced with a wide range of uncertainties, which are perhaps best reflected in the gulf in narratives between the bulls and the bears. For the bulls, OPEC is in a strong position: the declines in non-OPEC supply are structural while the slowdown in global economic growth is temporary. Based on this view, a […]

  • Saudi Arabia’s Oil Productive Capacity – The Trade-Offs

    By: Bassam Fattouh , Andreas Economou

    In a series of recent speeches and interviews, a consistent message coming from Saudi Aramco is that ‘future profit growth will be more from diversification into integrated oil refining and petrochemicals, besides natural gas production and supply for both the domestic and international markets’. But what about opportunities in the upstream oil sector and the […]

  • Could we see $2 gas in Europe in 2020?

    By: Mike Fulwood

    Europe has long been regarded as the balancing market for global LNG and has performed this function extremely well in the last twelve months, with total imports of 105 bcm – a 75 per cent rise year on year. In this period spot prices collapsed averaging less than $4 in the third quarter of this […]

  • Sanctions, Shipping, and Oil Markets

    By: Adi Imsirovic , Michal Meidan

    In just over a week, the theoretical cost of taking a barrel of oil from the Gulf to Asia, in the cheapest possible way, rose by $6 per barrel. At a time when refinery margins are in single digits, this is a major blow to refinery profitability. The US administration’s decision to sanction two subsidiaries […]

  • China’s energy security at 70

    By: Michal Meidan

    As China celebrated the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) on 1 October 2019, it seems to have gone full circle back to its 1949 assessments of the US: “a greedy and violent nation, struggling to remain the wealthiest and strongest on earth”. For the first two decades of […]