The real reason big oil is refusing to boost production
Over the last couple of weeks, a stand-off has been developing between President Joe Biden and shale oil and gas producers in West Texas. As soaring gas prices add pressure to cash-strapped United States residents already feeling the pressure of inflation, the economic strain is reflecting poorly on the Biden administration, which is scrambling to get someone, anyone — be it OPEC or producers in the Permian Basin — to open the taps and ease supply shortages. So far, however, Big Oil isn’t budging.
There is a lot of speculation about the many reasons this may be the case. Pundits have pontificated about the political dimensions of the standoff, noting that the right-leaning fossil fuels industry has little incentive to help out an administration that they see as antithetical and threatening to their livelihoods.
Why some countries find it hard to move away from fossil fuels
Ribboned shovel in hand, Prime Minister Keith Rowley joined a ceremonial groundbreaking last month to celebrate Trinidad and Tobago’s first large solar farm project expected to generate power for 42,000 homes.
But if anyone thought the project symbolized the twilight of the island nation’s long embrace of fossil fuels, Mr. Rowley set them straight.
“We will continue to extract the hydrocarbons available to us as long as there is an international market,” Mr. Rowley said, as BP and Shell executives looked on. “If we are going to sell the last barrel of oil or the last molecule of gas, so be it.”
Iron ore slump shows Chinese economy is still struggling
Iron ore’s drop to a five-month low adds to concerns over the strength of China’s economic recovery. We believe iron ore price risks are skewed to the downside
Iron ore has been on a downtrend for almost two months. Its price on the Singapore Exchange fell to a year-to-date low of $94.20/t last week, down more than 20 percent from its year-to-date highs and is now hovering below the key $100/t level.
Prices climbed above $130/t in February amid bets of a revival in steel demand in leading consumer China following the end of the strict Covid-19 lockdowns. Although China last month reported annual quarterly GDP growth of 4.5 percent, ahead of expectations – and much faster than the 2.9 percent for Q422 – there are concerns about whether the pace of growth can be sustained.
Milk production rises in March
The Amount of cow’s milk collected by dairy companies increased by 6.2 percent in March compared with the same month of last year to 912,000 tons, according to data from the Turkish Statistics Institute (TÜİK).
Drinking milk output rose nearly 11 percent year-on-year to 139,000 tons, while yogurt production was up 2.9 percent from March 2022 to around 99,000 tons.
Some 67,000 tons of cheese were produced from cow’s milk, which pointed to a 3.4 increase from a year ago. Ayran – a local drink made of yogurt – production, however, declined by 2.9 percent to 61,630 tons.
Türkiye’s butter production plunged more than 28 percent to a little over 8,000 tons.
TÜİK, on May 11, separately unveiled data for poultry production. According to the latest figures, chicken meat production was nearly 200,000 tons in March, marking a 1.5 percent decline on an annual basis.
Wuzhou’s distinctive tea embraces global growth
Tea farmer Tan Aiyun still remembers taking the first few sips of her hometown’s iconic drink, Liupao tea, as a child.
“When we didn’t feel well, because of a cold or some other common ailment, the elders would always grab a handful of leaves from storage and brew a hot cup of comforting tea for us,” recalled Tan, now 62.
“Liupao tea was more than a famous Chinese tea. It also was a cure-all, a ubiquitous beverage and an important part of our lives,” Tan added.
The tea is said to help lower blood pressure, improve appetite and aid digestion. Its distinctive earthy, woody tones give Liupao tea an aged flavor, the combined result of its leaves and its storage, fermentation and processing methods.
China April coal output eases from record high in March
China’s average daily coal production dipped in April from a record level a month ago, official data showed on Tuesday, as some miners trimmed output due to harsh weather and ahead of the low-demand season.
China produced 381.45 million tonnes of coal last month, up 4.5 percent from a year earlier and down 8.6 percent from March, data from the National Bureau of Statistics showed.
The daily average output in April was equivalent to 12.72 million tonnes versus a record 13.46 million tonnes in March.
Heavy snow hit Inner Mongolia in early April, forcing some open-pit mines to shut down and slowing road transportation.
Govt plans to make India self-sufficient in pulses production in three years
India’s import of pulses dropped by 60 percent between 2017-18 and 2022-23 as their production increased 9 percent. Encouraged by this, the government has chalked out a plan to focus on increasing the production of tur, urad and masur, potentially making the country self-sufficient. This will be particularly done by raising the productivity further. There was 41 percent increase from 655 kg/hectares to 924 kg/hectares in pulses yield in last seven years.
Afghanistan’s wheat crop threatened by locusts
A large-scale outbreak of locusts in Afghanistan’s biggest wheat-producing region is threatening to worsen the country’s already severe hunger crisis, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations said.
The latest figures from the United Nations show that 9 million of Afghanistan’s 41 million citizens (nearly 25 percent) are suffering acute food insecurity, including 1 million in the “emergency level acute food insecurity” category. The country has been embroiled in a civil war throughout most of the 21st century and is now under control of the Taliban following the United States’ withdrawal of troops in August 2021.