Headlines August 3rd through 9th.

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Holdovers and the ELN

Guerilla-initiated incidents dropped close to the average experienced during the previous Farc unilateral truce. Half were attributed to the ELN but it would be difficult to unequivocally call the rest ‘truce violations by the Farc’.

MinMinas says PIPE2 addressing problems

The Minister of Mines and Energy (MinMinas) Tomas González said that its PIPE2 plan is already keeping investment in Colombia and production above a million barrels a day.

Conflict on prior consultation after court decision

The Superior Tribunal of Pasto (Nariño) has ruled in favor of a Putumayo based indigenous association (ACIMVIO) and ruled against a prior decision from Interior Ministry to not certify the presence of the Inga group in an area of influence for a Gran Tierra Energy (TSX:GTE) exploration project.

USO takes PRE fight to the international stage

The USO claims workers have been pressured by anti-union forces in its attempt to negotiate entry to Pacific Rubiales Energy (TSX:PRE) through blackmail, and has taken to the international community to up pressure on authorities.

A guide or a warning on the Amazon?

The Amazon region represents both an area with interesting prospects for the hydrocarbons industry but also immense complexities. This has led the Ministry of Mines and Energy (MinMinas) to reach out to the Organization of the Colombian Amazon Communities (OPIAC) and a subsequent line up of eight workshops designed to bring these indigenous groups into a closer dialogue with authorities and the hydrocarbons industry. We read the document with interest but have comments on its practicality.

Crude prices moving in the wrong direction

At one time in late May, there was a hope that oil prices were rebounding, that somewhat like 2008/2009 there would be a rapid so-called ‘V-shaped’ recovery. After hitting bottom in January 2015, and a separate slightly higher bottom in late March, WTI rose for 11 straight weeks. Back in 2008, the bottom was WTI/Brent at US$33 (there was no gap at the time) in December but by August of 2009, both were back up over US$70. However mid-2015 has, so far, turned out quite different from 2009: both benchmark prices have fallen for 7 of the last 9 weeks.

ECP profits rise sequentially but production falls

Ecopetrol (NYSE:EC) grew its profit for the second straight quarter since its first loss as a listed company in the 4Q14, with refining posting a profit and adding a boost. Production has grown yearly, but fell off slightly compared to the previous quarter.

MinMinas budget cuts spark concern

Comments that the Ministry of Mines and Energy (MinMinas) will face a readjustment of its budget has led to concern from observers who say this could further impact a sector that is already suffering and combines poorly with the fall in exploration.

Governors vs Finance Ministry on royalties

A decision to freeze royalty funds after the fall in oil prices has the Finance Ministry at odds with departmental leaders, who want the funds to move forward with regional projects.

Peace Process: A glimmer of hope for the final stretch

The Colombian government’s chief negotiator in Havana Humberto de la Calle came forward with a strong statement that the talks are moving forward in Havana, and even put a time-frame on an agreement.

A guide or a warning on the Amazon?

The Amazon region represents both an area with interesting prospects for the hydrocarbons industry but also immense complexities. This has led the Ministry of Mines and Energy (MinMinas) to reach out to the Organization of the Colombian Amazon Communities (OPIAC) and a subsequent line up of eight workshops designed to bring these indigenous groups into a closer dialogue with authorities and the hydrocarbons industry. We read the document with interest but have comments on its practicality.

Crude prices moving in the wrong direction

At one time in late May, there was a hope that oil prices were rebounding, that somewhat like 2008/2009 there would be a rapid so-called ‘V-shaped’ recovery. After hitting bottom in January 2015, and a separate slightly higher bottom in late March, WTI rose for 11 straight weeks. Back in 2008, the bottom was WTI/Brent at US$33 (there was no gap at the time) in December but by August of 2009, both were back up over US$70. However mid-2015 has, so far, turned out quite different from 2009: both benchmark prices have fallen for 7 of the last 9 weeks.

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