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Watch: Market Movers Europe, Aug 17-21: Norway’s gas industry set for maintenance, OPEC+ assesses output cuts

With a lack of clarity over when biodiesel antidumping duties against Indonesia and Argentina will be removed, and the EU Commission launching an Argentinian biodiesel anti-subsidy investigation, George Griffiths, S&P Global Platts senior biofuels specialist, and Emma Kettley, S&P Global Platts commodity associate, look at the market reaction and the potential future of these emerging trade flows. Will import volumes reach the levels seen before antidumping duties were implemented? And will the anti-subsidy investigation provide a welcome respite for EU biodiesel producers?

Related podcast: As Indonesian and Argentinian biodiesel antidumping duties end, is there a respite for palm oil biofuel in Europe?

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View Full Transcript

In this week's highlights: Norway's gas industry is set for the start of major summer maintenance; and will the European carbon market continue its downtrend?

But first, the oil market will be focusing on the next meeting of the OPEC+ group of producers' Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee set for Wednesday. The meeting's aim is to assess the effectiveness of output cuts by the group, which accounts for nearly 40% of global production.

Brent crude futures have largely stuck to $40-$45 a barrel range over the last couple of months, but the group faces the twin challenges of weak demand and discipline among its own members. Some countries are not meeting their cut commitments, and Russia has long wavered on the issue. We should get views this week from one Russian producer on a growth path, Gazprom Neft, which has a number of Arctic oil projects, when it publishes its results on Thursday.

And that takes us to our social media question for the week: How long do you think OPEC-plus can maintain discipline on production? Tweet us your thoughts using the hashtag #PlattsMM.

Moving from oil to European gas, Norway is set to begin its heaviest period of planned 2020 maintenance at a number of offshore fields this week. The series of planned maintenance work is set to have a major impact on Norway's gas production capacity until the end of September.

An average of around 50 million cubic meters a day of gas output will be curtailed, or around one seventh of its approximate 350 million cubic meters a day capacity.

At times, however, the impact is set to be much greater and as you can see in this chart, is expected on some days to be as high as 140 million cubic meters a day.

The traditional summer maintenance period on the Norwegian Continental Shelf comes as European gas prices remain historically low despite a small rally in recent weeks.

And finally, to the EU carbon market, where emissions allowance prices have just dropped briefly below 25 euros a metric ton after July's rally to a 14-year high of over 30 euros.

As the chart shows, August has been lackluster for carbon prices so far, and market participants will be watching closely this week to see if the recent downward pressure on prices intensifies. Underlying compliance demand is still very low, with cheap natural gas keeping the cleaner fuel competitive against coal for power generation. Industrial demand is also weak due to the coronavirus lockdowns across Europe. On the supply side, monthly auction volumes in September through November are set to rebound above 85 million metric tons a month, keeping the market well supplied.

For more on all the issues affecting commodity markets, please check out Platts Live, a new section of our website that has been created for our customers to continue engaging with us, and each other. You can find it at the address displayed on your screen. Elsewhere on our website you can find out all the details of our new Sustainable Aviation Fuel price assessment, launched Monday.

Thank you for kicking off your Monday with us and have a great week ahead!