February 6, 2018
Dateline 2017-12-24, Malaysian Digest:
The year 2017 has been a challenging one for Malaysia’s oil and gas (O&G) hub of Labuan, with the island’s key engine of economic growth continuing to run at a slow pace.
This has somewhat overshadowed Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s announcement of a feasibility study on a bridge to connect Labuan to the Sabah mainland. The proposed link is poised to be an economic game-changer for Labuan once it is put in place.
Notably, a number of O&G companies were shut down or had their operations downsized since last year, but the people here continue to be self-resilient.
Still, in spite of these challenges, the people and business community in the duty-free-island keep reminding themselves that ‘the darkest hour is just before dawn’…positivity, whether in personal life or business, is a choice rather than an outcome.
Many do not believe that Labuan – the only O&G hub in the region – is facing such problems as other oil-producing states and countries are also not spared from being affected badly by the slowdown.
August 12, 2017
I remember when Labuan was where all the torch to metal action was, in addition to humourous stories about the actions of personnel stationed there.
Dateline 2017-06-29, Daily Express:
A political actvist suggested that the Government help revive Labuan shipyard and bring back its glory years when it was a leading contributor to the local economy rather than the oil and gas sector.
Lau Seng Kiat, who was an Independent candidate in the 2004 general election, said during its heydays the shipyard stood out as a regional leader with some 3,000 employees including subcontractors, vendors and others benefiting from the contractors of the company. “The oil and gas sector was not in full bloom yet.”
Sabah Shipyard as it was then called and now Labuan Shipyard & Engineering Sdn Bhd (LSE), was established in 1972 and much earlier than the Asian Supply Base (ASB). The yard has impressive state-of-the-art facilities and built 16,500 dwt palm oil/chemical tankers for MISC which were said to be the largest built in the country.
It also supplied power barges to the Philippines, Pakistan and SESB to fast track industrial development.
The yard also built cement and log carriers and tugboats.
“But due to lack of continued support the shipyard slipped from its position and was overtaken by the oil and gas boom,” said Lau.
February 4, 2017
Dateline 2017-01-08, Daily Express:
A long-time big player in the oil and gas industry here – Petronas Carigali Sdn Bhd (PCSD) – has moved its operations to its own supply base at Bintulu Port, Sarawak, effective January 1.
A notice issued by the company advised its service providers and vendors that the delivery point for its materials would now be the East Logistics Command Centre (ELCC) at the Bintulu Port.
Industry sources reacting immediately to the latest development said it was certainly bad news for Labuan but good news for Sarawak which, not long ago, had acted firmly on Petronas to increase Sarawak’s opportunities in its employment.
PCSD had a strong presence here and had helped to raise the profile of the island as a significant oil and gas hub.
The company had been serving as an anchor tenant at the Asian Supply Base (ASB) which has often been described as a fully integrated logistics hub for oil and gas. ASB is a fully Sabah-owned entity and was established in 1985 when Tan Sri Harris Salleh was the Chief Minister of Sabah.
July 23, 2015
Dateline 2015-06-08, Daily Express:
Though oil prices have inched up to about US$66 (RM235.62) per barrel, they are still 17.5pc below the US$80 per barrel deemed a reasonable level at which Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) may resume drilling contract awards, especially for marginal fields.
Until then, rigs off contracts and offshore support vessels (OSVs) are making their way to the stacking grounds.
There are 29 O&G companies listed on Bursa Malaysia and many more that are related to the industry. The depressed oil prices have shaved off on average 46pc from stock prices since June last year. The industry is now facing lower corporate earnings and possible loss of jobs due to Petronas’ move to cut capital expenditure and production.
Popular stacking grounds in the region include Johor waters, the Bay of Brunei in Labuan and Batam Island in Indonesia. Sources say the number of stacked rigs and vessels in these locations has more than doubled since the turn of the year, and is steadily rising.
January 16, 2015
Dateline 2014-11-04, Hellenic Shipping News:
Premiums paid for Malaysia’s benchmark light sweet crudes extended their decline to a fresh two-year low Monday as fragile petroleum refining margins and competition from non-regional grades dented end-user demand, while the influx of new Kimanis crude added to concerns over recent oversupply conditions, traders said.
Malaysia’s Labuan crude was assessed at a $4.70/barrel premium to Dated Brent on Monday, its lowest level since touching a premium of $4.49/b on August 21, 2012, while the premium for Tapis crude to Dated Brent fell to $2.30/b on Monday, its lowest level since August 15, 2012, when the crude was assessed at Dated Brent plus $2.30/b.
Kikeh was last assessed at a premium of $4.40/b on Monday, its lowest point since $3.92/b on August 13, 2012.
May 1, 2014
Revival? When was the first attempt?
Daily Express, dateline 2014-03-25:
The Chinese Chamber of Commerce (LCC) here has expressed support for the revival of the USD2 billion oil and gas investment on Pulau Daat, off Labuan.
Its President Datuk Wong Kii Yii said this was because the mega project would definitely boost the local economy.
He hoped this time the project would materialise as Labuan had been waiting for it for four years.
“Labuan also has had no significant big projects in recent years as everything went to Sabah,” he said, Monday.
He said the proposed investment would complement Malaysia’s existing oil and gas industry in Miri, Terengganu, Bintulu and Labuan.
A substantial part of Malaysia’s vision of becoming a regional major player in oil and gas will be materialised when Johor’s Rapid and Pulau Kuraman and other proposals come on stream.
January 8, 2014
Dateline 2013-11-13, The Edge:
The Finance Ministry is willing to help Labuan realise its aspiration of emerging as Malaysia’s international oil and gas hub, says Deputy Finance Minister Datuk Ahmad Maslan.
He said the federal government was seriously looking at developing the oil and gas sector in Labuan.
“With increasing international and local players operating in Labuan the Federal government, through the Ministry of Finance, is willing to assist turn the plan into a reality,” he told Bernama.
Ahmad Maslan said the active participation of local players was crucial in developing the island’s economy.
“What we would like to see is more local participation in the oil and gas sector,” he said.
December 1, 2013
Dateline 2013-10-06, Malaysian Insider:
An Iranian tycoon has used the tax-free port of Labuan for his oil business to skirt Western sanctions imposed on his country, the New York Times reported.
Babak Zanjani, 39, devised a scheme to disguise the origins of Iranian oil and sold it on the open market by transferring millions of barrels from tanker to tanker, often using Labuan as the drop-off point, as alleged by the European Union.
The New York Times quoted Zanjani in interviews with Iranian reformist weekly Aseman and the semi-official Iranian Students’ News Agency as saying that he used a vast network of 64 companies in Dubai, Turkey and Malaysia to sell millions of barrels of oil, earning US$17.5 billion (RM55.6 billion) in foreign exchange for Iran’s oil ministry, the Revolutionary Guards and the Iranian central bank.
November 26, 2012
I had to get from Labuan to Kimanis. Unfortunately, the flight schedules didn’t allow me to make it to Kimanis on time. Alternate travel arrangements were made…