Investor Strike in Oil and Gas?

In my previous posting “Blind Spots” I referred to the 2014 Oil Council Africa conference and how certain questions had sparked in me a wider reflection on the state of the Energy industry.  This year at the Oil and Gas Council (more on that timely rebranding in a subsequent post…) in Paris some of us were really surprised by the almost bullish atmosphere of the O&G companies.  The oil price rally from the “depths” of $43 in the spring, to the then almost $65, was being seen as a strong indication that ‘the worst is over’.   

The two main sessions on financing were at the very end of the three day conference – which allowed the mainstream presentations and panels (corporate and NOC/Governmental) to proceed with ‘business as usual’.  Seen from the lens of the financing community this could be better characterised as sleepwalking.    Many great projects, top notch geology and technical stories, as well as mediocre ones  – and no consideration (I exaggerate for effect) of the financing of these project or of the likely returns on capital that these projects might, or indeed should, create.

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Blind Spots in Oil and Gas

Didn’t see the 2014 oil price shock coming? nope neither did I.   Having missed that one I am going to explore in a couple of blog posts the question of whether we are walking into another “unseen” and bigger industry shakeup. 

At the Oil Council conference in summer 2014 there was a panel on HSE – or whatever acronym is currently used to cover our myriad concerns – and a question was asked, “What keeps you awake at night?”.  It became a bit of a race to the top for the moral high-ground, of how each panelist had deeper and more sincere concerns than the previous on safety, security, environment, social etc.  Although the HSE issue is rightly a cornerstone of our industry, the question itself got me thinking; and the thing that keeps me awake at night is nothing to do with our industry.

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