Argentina, China lead shale development outside North America

As recently as last year, only four countries in the world were producing commercial volumes of either natural gas from shale formations (shale gas) or crude oil from tight formations (tight oil): the U.S. and Canada, and more recently, Argentina and China. Beyond these four countries, other countries have started exploring hydrocarbons from shale and…


China mulls sale of state corporation pipelines

China’s government appears to be planning a major restructuring of its petroleum industry that would force state-owned giants to sell their pipeline networks. The limited breakup of the oil and gas monopolies under consideration by the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) would establish pipeline operators as independent businesses to ensure competitive access, Bloomberg News…


China’s elusive shale gas boom: NOC’s to the rescue?

In the coming decade, China’s natural gas market is expected to undergo robust growth fueled by a number of environmental and economic drivers. A much discussed natural gas strategy for China is to develop its shale gas resources – an unsurprising choice given that the country is home to the largest technically recoverable shale gas…


Sinopec, PetroChina stick with shale gas as drilling costs fall

China’s top two state-owned companies PetroChina and Sinopec are pushing ahead with efforts to commercialize their dedicated shale gas projects in China, mainly because drilling costs have fallen. Speaking last week at the company’s annual results briefing, Sinopec Chairman Fu Chengyu said shale gas and unconventional gas will continue to be a strategic point of…


China prepares for third round of shale gas bidding

China’s Ministry of Land and Resources has begun preparations for a third round of bidding for shale gas exploration, the Beijing-based Economic Observer reports, citing an unnamed source at the ministry. The ministry completed the second round of bidding about one year ago. In late October, the ministry fined China Petrochemical Corporation (Sinopec Group) for…


China’s shale challenges come into sharper focus

At recent conferences in Shanghai and Beijing, Chinese Government officials voiced confidence in meeting targets for the new natural gas technology in the near term. But a host of problems surfaced for producing larger volumes of gas to fulfil the government’s longer-term forecasts. Speaking at an industry workshop in Beijing, National Energy Administration (NEA) vice…