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Hungary Oil & Gas Report Q2 2014 - New Report Available

New Energy research report from Business Monitor International is now available from Fast Market Research

 

Boston, MA -- (ReleaseWire) -- 04/14/2014 -- In the race for attention and upstream investment interest, Hungary is only marginally in the race in central Europe. Despite many desirable elements; a clean regulatory process, proximity to hundreds of millions of customers, a well run downstream sector and pipelines to deliver goods, try as it might, Hungary has so far failed to identify source rock in sufficient quantity and quality to hold out hope of the elephant size discovery that lures the super majors and their large exploration budgets. That said, there are some smaller independents that remain committed and convinced that the absence of competition from those super majors clears the field for them.

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There is a somewhat brighter picture in the mid & downstream sectors. Its refinery sector is modern and boasts a utilisation rate of over 80%. Pipeline news in the 2014-2016 timeframe will be dominated by the construction of the Hungarian portion of the South Stream pipeline (South Stream Hungary), and the country's largest oil and gas group MOL is entering new ventures. That may be good news for shareholders, but its decision to buy North Sea exploration and production licences will do nothing to boost the low reserve numbers for land-locked Hungary

On the upside, while the 'big find' has remained elusive, the independents in Hungary have had some success in tapping into new gas reserves. Those discoveries and the South Stream pipeline should provide greater long term security of supply for domestic gas users. But, along with decreasing production, is decreasing domestic demand. Hungary is still far from shaking off the economic rubble associated with the global banking crisis. The OECD predicts timid annual growth (less than 2%) for the remainder of the decade, reflecting BMI projections for limping petroleum demand within the country.

The main trends and developments for Hungary's oil and gas sector are:

- Call for Bids: On February 19th, the Hungarian government released the results of a call for bids on seven parcels that was launched in late 2013. Two of the parcels were awarded to MOL, Hungary's largest oil and gas firm. Vermillion Exploration picked up a single parcel in the round. An interesting development was the awarding of another exploration concession to CEGE to search for ways to exploit geothermal energy. Three other oil and gas parcels received no bids, and it was not revealed if those that were awarded had more than one suitor. While smaller independents had publicly indicated interest (see below) if they could line up risk sharing partnerships, a re-entry of a major to Hungarian exploration play did not materialise.
- A second round of exploration parcel auctions is now under consideration. Officials from the country's development ministry told the Wall Street Journal that Hungary will likely put another auction process in place during the first half of 2014but specific parcels were not revealed.

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