Stephen O'Sullivan

Managing Director, Energy Research
+44 20 7246 7800

About Energy Blog

Stephen is a Managing Director at Trusted Sources.

Stephen began his career in the energy sector at BP and Total before moving into oil & gas consulting with Coopers and Lybrand. Since this role Stephen has held senior research positions at multiple institutions including MC Securities, United Financial Group, Deutsche Bank, Macquarie, and Barclays Capital. Stephen is currently based in Hong Kong.

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Previous blog posts

Chinese gas in 2016: Better outcomes than expected Chinese gas in 2016: Better outcomes than expected, Stephen O'Sullivan, 13 Feb 2017
Turkmen gas supplies to Iran cut off – much ado about nothing Turkmen gas supplies to Iran cut off – much ado about nothing, Stephen O'Sullivan, 20 Jan 2017
Chinese gas demand in 2017: Forecasts remain up in the air Chinese gas demand in 2017: Forecasts remain up in the air, Stephen O'Sullivan, 18 Jan 2017
Chinese renewables challenge medium-term outlook for gas demand Chinese renewables challenge medium-term outlook for gas demand, Stephen O'Sullivan, 11 Jan 2017
The Times They Are A-Changin’ – Shale gas licensing goes local The Times They Are A-Changin’ – Shale gas licensing goes local, Stephen O'Sullivan, 15 Dec 2016
“Breaking up is hard to do” – CNPC separates its pipeline business from gas sales “Breaking up is hard to do” – CNPC separates its pipeline business from gas sales, Stephen O'Sullivan, 13 Dec 2016
Now is the winter of our potential discontent Now is the winter of our potential discontent, 8 Dec 2016
Winter gas shortages face China yet again Winter gas shortages face China yet again, Stephen O'Sullivan, 1 Nov 2016
Positive developments on Iranian oil: IOCs invited to qualify for upstream tenders Positive developments on Iranian oil: IOCs invited to qualify for upstream tenders, Stephen O'Sullivan, 26 Oct 2016
Coal to gas failing to deliver in China Coal to gas failing to deliver in China, Stephen O'Sullivan, 18 Oct 2016
No rush: Chinese pipelines to open up – but not for another decade No rush: Chinese pipelines to open up – but not for another decade, Stephen O'Sullivan, 13 Oct 2016
Iran-Turkey relations back in the spotlight as gas price dispute continues Iran-Turkey relations back in the spotlight as gas price dispute continues, Stephen O'Sullivan, 4 Oct 2016
Guangdong plans big expansion of distributed generation – a challenging programme Guangdong plans big expansion of distributed generation – a challenging programme, Stephen O'Sullivan, 27 Sep 2016
China “biggest gas demand risk” – IEA China “biggest gas demand risk” – IEA, Stephen O'Sullivan, 23 Aug 2016
China’s switch away from coal will drive medium-term gas demand China’s switch away from coal will drive medium-term gas demand, Stephen O'Sullivan, 18 Aug 2016
Chinese power generators switch to gas as policy pressures intensify Chinese power generators switch to gas as policy pressures intensify, 10 Aug 2016
Lower consumer gas prices Lower consumer gas prices, Stephen O'Sullivan, 4 Aug 2016
Third-party access under pressure from China’s big three oil companies Third-party access under pressure from China’s big three oil companies, Stephen O'Sullivan, 21 Jul 2016
China’s nuclear renaissance – global nuclear’s (very big) last gasp? China’s nuclear renaissance – global nuclear’s (very big) last gasp?, Stephen O'Sullivan, 21 Jun 2016
Hinkley Point faces meltdown Hinkley Point faces meltdown, Stephen O'Sullivan, 17 Jun 2016
China gas pricing generates conflict of interests – impacts overseas gas companies China gas pricing generates conflict of interests – impacts overseas gas companies, Stephen O'Sullivan, 6 May 2016
Hinkley Point UK nuclear decision delayed – bad news for CGN and EDF Hinkley Point UK nuclear decision delayed – bad news for CGN and EDF, Stephen O'Sullivan, 25 Apr 2016
China moves ahead with coal to gas developments – environmental concerns but another source of gas China moves ahead with coal to gas developments – environmental concerns but another source of gas, Stephen O'Sullivan, 7 Apr 2016
The economic case for South Africa’s nuclear power plans The economic case for South Africa’s nuclear power plans, Stephen O'Sullivan, 1 Apr 2016
Asian gas sector needs reforms to protect regional market share Asian gas sector needs reforms to protect regional market share, Stephen O'Sullivan, 26 Feb 2016
Gas prices need to fall further to improve Asia’s environment Gas prices need to fall further to improve Asia’s environment, Stephen O'Sullivan, 19 Feb 2016
China cuts gas prices today to stimulate demand China cuts gas prices today to stimulate demand, Stephen O'Sullivan, 20 Nov 2015
China exports first indigenous Hualong One reactor China exports first indigenous Hualong One reactor, Stephen O'Sullivan, 18 Nov 2015
State monopoly holding back Chinese shale development – as time runs out State monopoly holding back Chinese shale development – as time runs out, Stephen O'Sullivan, 17 Nov 2015
Renewables threaten China gas Renewables threaten China gas, Stephen O'Sullivan, 10 Nov 2015
Chinese gas demand to grow just 2 per cent this year – gas pricing to blame Chinese gas demand to grow just 2 per cent this year – gas pricing to blame, Stephen O'Sullivan, 26 Oct 2015
Outlook for Asian LNG looking weak Outlook for Asian LNG looking weak, Stephen O'Sullivan, 19 Oct 2015
Domestic LNG trading gets easier in China Domestic LNG trading gets easier in China, Stephen O'Sullivan, 8 Oct 2015
China extends energy influence into Central Asia China extends energy influence into Central Asia, Stephen O'Sullivan, 25 Sep 2015
Third Russia–China pipeline deal signed: Deal or no deal? Third Russia–China pipeline deal signed: Deal or no deal?, Stephen O'Sullivan, 17 Sep 2015
Oil & gas sector reforms gain momentum Oil & gas sector reforms gain momentum, Stephen O'Sullivan, 4 Sep 2015
China’s gas imports decline as demand growth tumbles China’s gas imports decline as demand growth tumbles, Stephen O'Sullivan, 3 Aug 2015
Shale gas – China’s fuel of the future (forever?) Shale gas – China’s fuel of the future (forever?), Stephen O'Sullivan, 15 Jul 2015
China gas demand continues to slide:  imports slump, LNG hard hit China gas demand continues to slide: imports slump, LNG hard hit, Stephen O'Sullivan, 6 Jul 2015
China’s new energy aim: to become a transit country for gas? China’s new energy aim: to become a transit country for gas?, Stephen O'Sullivan, 30 Jun 2015
Chinese gas prices heading lower Chinese gas prices heading lower, Stephen O'Sullivan, 22 Jun 2015
Uncertain Future for China’s LNG Imports Uncertain Future for China’s LNG Imports, Stephen O'Sullivan, 16 Jun 2015
Too much infrastructure, not enough gas Too much infrastructure, not enough gas, Stephen O'Sullivan, 11 Jun 2015
Is a summer gas price cut looming in China – with medium-term benefits for the sector? Is a summer gas price cut looming in China – with medium-term benefits for the sector?, Stephen O'Sullivan, 8 Jun 2015
China’s gas storage challenge – will commercial or national factors prevail? China’s gas storage challenge – will commercial or national factors prevail?, Stephen O'Sullivan, 3 Jun 2015
Beijing cuts shale gas subsidies – and coal bed methane faces bleak future Beijing cuts shale gas subsidies – and coal bed methane faces bleak future, Stephen O'Sullivan, 28 May 2015
China starts building its first indigenous nuclear reactor targetting the export market China starts building its first indigenous nuclear reactor targetting the export market, Stephen O'Sullivan, 11 May 2015
To Merge or not to Merge? Is that the question? To Merge or not to Merge? Is that the question?, Stephen O'Sullivan, 8 May 2015
Russia-China gas talks continue, but no result expected until autumn Russia-China gas talks continue, but no result expected until autumn, James Henderson, 6 May 2015
China’s nuclear renaissance – going critical? China’s nuclear renaissance – going critical?, Stephen O'Sullivan, 5 May 2015
Russian oil production, drilling and exports on the rise Russian oil production, drilling and exports on the rise, James Henderson, 1 May 2015
How slowdown in China’s gas demand affects infrastructure How slowdown in China’s gas demand affects infrastructure, Stephen O'Sullivan, 30 Apr 2015
PetroChina gives up on south China pipelines – the start of a new trend? PetroChina gives up on south China pipelines – the start of a new trend?, Stephen O'Sullivan, 21 Apr 2015
China gas: Supply/Demand; the great debate China gas: Supply/Demand; the great debate, Stephen O'Sullivan, 16 Apr 2015
Last orders for coal in China? Last orders for coal in China?, Stephen O'Sullivan, 7 Apr 2015
CNOOC scales back shale CNOOC scales back shale, Stephen O'Sullivan, 31 Mar 2015
The balance shifts in Chinese gas imports The balance shifts in Chinese gas imports, Stephen O'Sullivan, 23 Mar 2015
Asian LNG demand growth slowed in 2014 but still attractive for China Asian LNG demand growth slowed in 2014 but still attractive for China, Stephen O'Sullivan, 20 Mar 2015
China gas price cut helps domestic LNG producers China gas price cut helps domestic LNG producers, Stephen O'Sullivan, 12 Mar 2015
China to continue gas price reform China to continue gas price reform, Stephen O'Sullivan, 3 Mar 2015
LNG import infrastructure: Overbuilt and underused LNG import infrastructure: Overbuilt and underused, Stephen O'Sullivan, 26 Feb 2015
The impact of lower oil prices on shale gas in China The impact of lower oil prices on shale gas in China, Stephen O'Sullivan, 18 Feb 2015
China gas consumption slowdown – a new challenge for gas exporters? China gas consumption slowdown – a new challenge for gas exporters?, Stephen O'Sullivan, 11 Feb 2015
China Energy blog post on shale output China Energy blog post on shale output, Stephen O'Sullivan, 3 Feb 2015
Chinese gas prices could rise more slowly than expected Chinese gas prices could rise more slowly than expected, Stephen O'Sullivan, 21 Jan 2015
China’s Third Shale gas Auction – Not When But If? China’s Third Shale gas Auction – Not When But If?, Stephen O'Sullivan, 6 Jan 2015
Sinopec increases investment in its Fuling shale gas field – on track to reach 2015 output target Sinopec increases investment in its Fuling shale gas field – on track to reach 2015 output target, Stephen O'Sullivan, 12 Dec 2014
China Energy Strategy to 2020 released: interesting and positive for the gas and power sector but let’s wait and see what actually makes it into the more important Five-Year Plan due out next year China Energy Strategy to 2020 released: interesting and positive for the gas and power sector but let’s wait and see what actually makes it into the more important Five-Year Plan due out next year, Stephen O'Sullivan, 3 Dec 2014
Declining oil prices could prompt a rethink on US export volumes to Asia Declining oil prices could prompt a rethink on US export volumes to Asia, Stephen O'Sullivan, 25 Nov 2014
One small step for (gas)man in China One small step for (gas)man in China, Stephen O'Sullivan, 18 Nov 2014
China’s Coal Bed Methane search goes west China’s Coal Bed Methane search goes west, Stephen O'Sullivan, 11 Nov 2014
CNOOC looks for foreign partners to develop its first shale gas block CNOOC looks for foreign partners to develop its first shale gas block, Stephen O'Sullivan, 6 Nov 2014
Downgrade of China shale gas targets poses questions for project financing Downgrade of China shale gas targets poses questions for project financing, Stephen O'Sullivan, 29 Oct 2014
Europe’s energy security “trilemma”: Nuclear scores well Europe’s energy security “trilemma”: Nuclear scores well, Stephen O'Sullivan, Christopher Granville, 21 Oct 2014
China’s Fuling shale play – a one-off or a sign of things to come? China’s Fuling shale play – a one-off or a sign of things to come?, Stephen O'Sullivan, 20 Oct 2014
China steps in as Russia’s friend in need China steps in as Russia’s friend in need, Stephen O'Sullivan, Jonathan Fenby, Christopher Granville, 2 Sep 2014
China’s reluctance to buy US energy is overstated China’s reluctance to buy US energy is overstated, Stephen O'Sullivan, 1 Jul 2014
Water shortages dampen China’s shale gas outlook even further Water shortages dampen China’s shale gas outlook even further, Stephen O'Sullivan, 25 Feb 2014
China’s 2013 gas statistics suggest further price and import volume increases China’s 2013 gas statistics suggest further price and import volume increases, 12 Feb 2014
Gas-fired power in China gets more support – positive for price reform Gas-fired power in China gets more support – positive for price reform, 4 Feb 2014
Geopolitical tensions trump energy security Geopolitical tensions trump energy security, 17 Jan 2014
European Commission vs Gazprom:  Settlement initiative from Gazprom bodes well for the wider investment case European Commission vs Gazprom: Settlement initiative from Gazprom bodes well for the wider investment case, 9 Dec 2013
Key conclusions from the World LNG conference Key conclusions from the World LNG conference, 25 Nov 2013
Singapore buys into East African LNG Singapore buys into East African LNG, Stephen O'Sullivan, 19 Nov 2013
Novatek gains from Russian LNG export liberalization going faster and wider than expected Novatek gains from Russian LNG export liberalization going faster and wider than expected, James Henderson, 18 Nov 2013
China gas: Tackling air pollution by increased gas use – especially as a  transport fuel: Lessons from Hong Kong China gas: Tackling air pollution by increased gas use – especially as a transport fuel: Lessons from Hong Kong, Stephen O'Sullivan, 18 Nov 2013

Energy Blog

The impact of energy in emerging markets

Iran ratchets up the pressure on Total (and CNPC)

9 Mar 2017

French oil major Total has been one of the most upbeat energy companies among those discussing investment in Iran. As all Iranian investment is now caught up in the latest US political developments, Iran has started to increase pressure on Total to move ahead with its plans.

Last November Total was the first Western oil company to sign a preliminary deal with the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) under the revised Iran Petroleum Contract (IPC). This was an outline agreement to develop Phase 11 of the giant South Pars gas field with a target output of 18.6 bcma (total Iranian gas...

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China moves ahead with more nuclear in 2017

7 Mar 2017

China will continue to move ahead with the planned expansion of its nuclear programme in 2017, according to plans released by the National Energy Administration (NEA).

More construction planned

The NEA has confirmed that five reactors currently under construction will be completed this year, while another eight will start construction and planning for a further eight units will begin. At present, China has 36 operating reactors.

The five reactors to be completed this year are the EPR at Taishan 1 (which will be the first such reactor in the world to be completed), the AP1000...

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Optimism from Iran about oil & gas investment – Great Expectations, not entirely justified

23 Feb 2017

Iran’s Ministry of Petroleum is talking optimistically about $35 billion worth of oil, gas and petrochemical projects being agreed in the next few months. The country’s Deputy Minister of Petroleum, Hossein Zamaninia, last week cited a total of some $70 bn worth of contracts currently under discussion and noted that he hoped Iran would finalize half of these within a few months. Our view is that the figures being discussed are extremely optimistic given the headwinds facing Iran at present.

Big focus on upstream oil but also gas, refining and petrochemicals

The majority of these...

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Gas to become more price-competitive in China – positive impact on demand

21 Feb 2017

Gas still central to China’s energy story

The Chinese government has ambitious plans to increase the role of gas in the economy – partly through replacing coal-fired power with gas generation and raising the share of gas in the industrial sector. The implementation of these plans has not yet been as successful as the authorities had hoped, and the 2020 target for the share of gas in China’s total energy consumption was recently lowered from 10 per cent to a range between 8.3 and 10.0 per cent.

High prices constrain demand

One constraint on demand growth for gas has been the...

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