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Chevron Acquires Offshore Suriname Acreage

Chevron Corporation announced that its wholly owned subsidiary Chevron Global Energy Inc. (Chevron) will be assigned a 50 percent working interest in Blocks 42 and 45 offshore Suriname through an agreement with Kosmos Energy.

Under the agreement, Kosmos will have a 50 percent working interest and remain operator of both blocks until the end of the exploration phase. Chevron will assume the remaining 50 percent working interest and will be the operator following any commercial discoveries.

“This agreement enables us to explore for new resources in this frontier basin,” said George Kirkland, vice chairman, Chevron Corporation. “These blocks are on trend with new deepwater Cretaceous discoveries in the region.”

Blocks 42 and 45 are located approximately 155 miles (250 kilometers) from Paramaribo and cover a combined area of approximately 2.8 million gross acres, at water depths ranging between 650 and 8,500 feet (200-2600 meters).

“We are very pleased to participate in Suriname’s emerging energy sector,” said Ali Moshiri, president of Chevron Africa and Latin America Exploration and Production Company. “These blocks will expand our exploration portfolio in Latin America.”

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Mexico: Cal Dive Nets Second Pemex Contract

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Cal Dive International, Inc. announced that it has been awarded a contract by Pemex Exploración y Producción for the installation of a 20 inch subsea pipeline located in the Abkatun Pol Chuc Field in 73 meters of water.

The contract is expected to generate total revenue of approximately $46 million and will utilize two of the Company’s key assets. The offshore construction is expected to commence in the second quarter 2012.

Quinn Hébert, President and Chief Executive Officer of Cal Dive, stated, “We are pleased to announce our second contract win in Mexico for 2012. Mexico is shaping up to be a very active market in 2012 as expected. So far we have been awarded contracts in Mexico with aggregate expected revenue in 2012 of approximately $70 million compared to revenues generated from Mexico projects in 2011 of approximately $30 million.

Cal Dive International, Inc., headquartered in Houston, Texas, is a marine contractor that provides an integrated offshore construction solution to its customers, including manned diving, pipelay and pipe burial, platform installation and platform salvage services to the offshore oil and natural gas industry on the Gulf of Mexico OCS, Northeastern U.S., Latin America, Southeast Asia, China, Australia, the Middle East and the Mediterranean, with a fleet of 29 vessels, including 19 surface and saturation diving support vessels and 10 construction barges.

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Anonymous bring down Interpol website in retaliation for 25 arrests

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Supporters of the Anonymous hacker group attacked Interpol‘s main website after the international police agency conducted a number of hacker arrests across the globe.

­The website Interpol.int was unreachable for a half hour on Wednesday, Forbes reports. Access was later restored, although the loading time remains slow. The attack appears to have been conducted using a botnet. Anonymous Twitter accounts tweeted “interpol.int seems to be #TangoDown. We can’t say that this surprises us much,” and “Looks like interpol.int is having some traffic issues. Now who would have expected that?”

The attacks came as Interpol announced the arrests of 25 suspected Anonymous members, aged between 17 and 40, who it alleges planned coordinated cyber-attacks against Colombia’s defense ministry and presidential websites, Chile’s Endesa electricity company and national library, among other targets. The arrests were part of Operation Unmask, during which police in Colombia, Argentina, Chile and Spain seized computers, mobile phones, credit cards and cash at 40 locations in 15 cities.

Among the 25 under arrest are four Anonymous hackers detained by police in Spain earlier on Tuesday under claims that they conducted attacks on Spanish political parties’ websites. The Spanish National Police also said two servers in Bulgaria and the Czech Republic had been blocked as part of Operation Unmask, and that a manager of Anonymous’ operations in Spain and Latin America, known by the aliases “Thunder” and “Pacotron,” was among those arrested.

The four are also suspected of vandalizing websites, conducting DDoS attacks and publishing sensitive data on police officers assigned to Spain’s royal palace and its prime minister’s office.

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EL-ERIAN: Europe Threatens To Cripple The IMF

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G20 finance ministers need to stand in the way of European manipulation of the International Monetary Fund when they meet in Mexico City this weekend, PIMCO chief executive Mohamed El-Erian writes in a column published today in the Financial Times.

A staunch critic of Europe‘s attempts to get around its internal problems by relying on IMF funding, he argues that non-European economies need to stand up for the IMF’s professed “uniformity of treatment,” particularly given the harsh rules the organizations have imposed on emerging market countries in Asia and Latin America in the past.

A few choice snippets:

It should come as no surprise that over the last couple of years Europe has pressed the IMF very hard to make exception after exception – and it has succeeded. This has resulted in a number of firsts by an organisation that prided itself on the “uniformity of treatment” for member countries.

And later…

This is an internal issue that the IMF cannot, and should not be expected to, solve. It is up to the eurozone to decide whether to go forward in its current configuration towards a fiscal union or whether to first slim down to a more coherent and stable configuration. This would provide a better basis for a larger European-financed firewall.

As tempting as it is, Europe should not seek to obfuscate this critical decision by using IMF financing to give the appearance of sustaining the unsustainable. It must start making the necessary, albeit very difficult, decisions. Until this happens, the G20 has a global responsibility to protect the IMF from further damage to its credibility and legitimacy.

Read El-Erian’s full editorial in the Financial Times >

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USA: SEACOR Buys 18 Liftboats from Superior

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SEACOR Marine has reached an agreement with Superior Energy Services L.L.C. to purchase 18 liftboats for $134 million plus working capital.

The transaction is expected to close by the end of March 2012, subject to regulatory approvals. All of the liftboats are currently located in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico.

U.S.-based SEACOR Marine, a subsidiary of SEACOR Holdings Inc., operates a fleet of offshore marine support vessels, serving the global offshore oil and gas exploration and production industry worldwide with operations and infrastructure concentrated in the United States, Latin America, North Sea, West Africa, Southeast Asia, and the Middle East.

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Koch Supply & Trading Launches Global LNG Trading Business

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Koch Supply & Trading Sárl said that it has launched a global gas trading business.

Stephen Cornish has joined Koch Supply & Trading Sárl to build the global trading and marketing business for liquefied natural gas, natural gas and related commodities.

Koch companies have a long track record of excellence in the natural gas markets,” Cornish said. “This venture into the international gas markets is a way to link its global portfolio to benefit its suppliers and customers. We believe this step into the international gas markets provides a strong counterparty for producers and customers alike.

We will build out our operations in Asia, Europe and the Americas to the high standard that Koch Supply & Trading has set and look forward to working with our counterparts. This is a very exciting venture for us.”

Koch Supply & Trading also said that  it plans to build a Europe-wide natural gas business from Geneva and an LNG trading business from offices in Houston, London, and Singapore. Origination and marketing support locations are also planned for the near future in East Asia, the Middle East and Latin America.

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