The world’s big energy groups have shelved $200 billion of spending on new projects in an urgent round of cost-cutting aimed at protecting investors’ dividends as the oil price slumps for a second time this year.
The sell-off in oil has been matched by a broader slump in copper, gold and other raw materials, pushing the Bloomberg commodities index to a six-year low over concerns of weaker Chinese growth and rising supplies across the board.
The plunge in crude prices since last summer has resulted in the deferral of 46 big oil and gas projects with 20 billion barrels of oil equivalent in reserves — more than Mexico’s entire proven holdings — according to consultancy Wood Mackenzie.
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