Malaysia’s Petronas warns on 2017 outlook despite swing to Q4 profit

April 27, 2017

Dateline 2017-03-14, Reuters:

Malaysia’s Petroliam Nasional Bhd warned on Tuesday of a cautious outlook for 2017, although sharp cutbacks in expenses by the state-run oil major allowed it to swing to a fourth-quarter profit from a loss in the year-ago period.

Petronas maintained what it called a “conservative” outlook for this year – despite also posting a higher profit for 2016 – saying it expects oil prices to remain uncertain and that it will continue to pursue lower costs.

Petronas, as the company is known, is relying on lower operating expenses, job cuts and project rollbacks to help it navigate through a low oil price environment.

Malaysia relies on its only Fortune 500 company for nearly a third of its oil and gas-related revenue. Petronas is one of the country’s largest employers with a workforce of over 50,000.

Malaysia risked transformation to reduce oil dependence, says Najib

April 21, 2017

Dateline 2017-03-06, The Star:

Deliberate efforts taken by the government under its Economic Transformation Programme (ETP) have reduced reliance on petroleum-related income to 14% today from up to 41% in 2009, says Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

“Had we not made the transformation that we risked, we would have been suffering today from great difficulties because of the sharp and sudden decline in oil prices which would have affected the government’s revenues that depend on it to a large extent,” he said.

Najib, who is also Finance Minister, said this during a recent interview with Al Arabiya News Channel’s General Manager Turki Aldakhil.

He was asked about the recipe for success in achieving Malaysia’s experience as some countries have been describing Malaysia as a successful example of good governance and development.

MPRC study shows Malaysian O&G companies more resilient than regional peers

April 19, 2017

Kipidap, as Rani Kulup would say.

Dateline 2017-03-06, The Edge:

The abrupt steep fall in global oil prices that has forced industry players to adjust to the “new normal” — low crude prices coupled with high cost pressures, Malaysian oil and gas services and equipment (OGSE) companies in fact fared better than regional and international players.

Speaking at the exclusive briefing organised by Malaysia Petroleum Resources Corp (MPRC), Malaysian Offshore Vessels Owners’ Association president Amir Hamzah Azizan said that the analysis showed the national oil and gas (O&G) industry is still resilient and stands a greater chance compared with other markets to rise from the current industry downturn.

“Let’s see this as an opportunity for our industry and country to rise from this downtrend. The landscape is changing globally but there is still great value in the industry,” Amir said.


No way out but to consolidate

April 16, 2017

Less than 4,000 SWEC licensed companies? There must be more SWEC registered companies.

Dateline 2017-04-06, The Edge:

Consolidation in the Malaysian oil and gas (O&G) industry — which had 3,956 Petronas-licensed companies as at 2015 — is deemed necessary to brave the current industry downturn.

“Malaysia is an O&G country and it is fundamental for us to develop the industry so that it can remain strong even post-downturn,” Malaysian Offshore Vessels Owners’ Association president Amir Hamzah Azizan told The Edge Financial Daily during an exclusive briefing organised by Malaysia Petroleum Resources Corp.

“Not all companies will survive because there is just not enough [work] to help them sustain. We should encourage the right partnerships to support and build capable local O&G players to compete and survive in this sphere,” he said.

To elaborate, Amir said when a big cake has shrunk to be a cupcake, the share would have to go to the efficient players so that they would be stronger to shape up the industry.

What’s the deal in RAPID?

April 15, 2017

Dateline 2017-03-04, The Star:

Tan Sri Shamsul Azhar Abbas, then president and CEO of Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas), played host to several key personnel from Saudi Arabia’s state-owned oil company Aramco when they visited Malaysia.

He hired several helicopters, taking the group to get an aerial view of the upcoming 22,000-acre Pengerang Integrated Petroleum Complex (PIPC) in Johor in the hope of convincing them about the huge potential of the development.

According to an industry insider, Shamsul was hoping to replicate the business model adopted by Canada’s oil giant Progress Energy Resources Corp – which is famed for having a successful strategy in diversifying risk and improving the viability of its projects by paring down stakes in its 100%-owned projects to other significant oil players – on Petronas’ projects in Pengerang.

So, after showering the Aramco’s people with some Malaysian hospitality, the insider says, Shamsul began to share his vision for Petronas’ Refinery and Petrochemical Integrated Development, or Rapid, project.

Moody’s: Oil and gas loans less than 4% of 6 Malaysian banks’ total loans

April 14, 2017

Dateline 2017-03-03, The Star:

Oil and gas loans made up less than 4% of Malaysian’s six largest banks’ total loan portfolios at end-2016, says Moody’s Investors Service.

The international rating agency said on Friday  that by contrast, the asset quality of the banks’ Malaysian operations remained robust in 2016.

“While a few banks experienced marginal rises in loan impairments from borrowers in the commodities sector, signs of broad asset quality deterioration across the corporate and household sector were absent,” it said.

Moody’s also pointed that the full year 2016 results of the six largest Moody’s-rated Malaysian banks by total assets show continued asset quality deterioration from their overseas loan portfolios, weaker profitability from slower revenue growth, as well as higher credit costs.

The banks assessed in Moody’s report are: Malayan Banking Bhd (A3/A3 stable, a3); CIMB Group Holdings Bhd (Baa1 stable); Public Bank Bhd (A3/A3 stable, a3); RHB Bank Bhd (A3/A3 stable, baa3); Hong Leong Bank Bhd (HLB, A3/A3 stable, baa1); and AmBank (M) Bhd (Baa1 stable, baa3).

Sarawak keen to turn Bintulu into gas industry hub

April 9, 2017

Dateline 2017-02-28, Malay Mail:

The Sarawak government is striving to turn Bintulu into a gas industry hub, says Chief Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Openg.

“We have brought up this (proposal) to the federal government (in our quest) to seek the cooperation of Petronas into making Bintulu a gas hub.

“If Pengerang (Johor) can become a refinery hub, we want Sarawak (Bintulu) to be the gas hub, and I have indicated this to Petronas,” he said.

He was speaking at the 1,000,000 Manhours Milestone Without Any Lost Time Injury for the EPC Kinabalu Re-Development Project Ceremony at Muara Tebas here today.

Abang Johari said the oil and gas industry should be centralised in Bintulu (in northern Sarawak) as its infrastructure and surroundings were feasible to cater to the industrial needs.