Oil companies have approved more big projects this year than the whole of last year – from BP’s expansion in the Gulf of Mexico to Eni’s deep-water liquefied natural gas facility off Mozambique.
But the industry’s long list of delayed projects continues to grow this year as drillers wait for higher oil prices, according to a new report by Norwegian consultancy Rystad Energy.
The number of major ventures that oil companies have postponed has grown to 105, up from 62 since the firm’s last report in January 2016. Those projects could tap into some 35 billion barrels of oil equivalent and absorb about $300 billion in development spending.
The number of delayed deep-water projects has grown from 9 in July 2015 to 27 in June 2017; delayed LNG projects increased from 4 to 10; delayed offshore gas projects climbed from 2 to 9.
So far, since oil prices crashed in the middle of 2014, oil companies have sanctioned 17 major projects that they’ll have to spend $78 billion to develop. This year, BP gave a greenlight to its deep-water Mad Dog 2 project in the Gulf and Noble Energy approved it deep-water Leviathan project off the coast of Israel.
Related: BP lowers offshore development costs