10 CFR 626.6 - Acquiring oil by direct purchase.
(a) General. For the direct purchase of crude oil, DOE shall, through certified contracting officers, conduct crude oil acquisitions in accordance with the FAR and the DEAR.
(b) Acquisition strategy. (1) DOE solicitations:
(i) May be either continuously open or fixed for a period of time (usually no longer than 6 months); and
(ii) May provide either for prompt delivery or for delivery at future dates.
(2) DOE may alter the acquisition plan to take advantage of differentials in prices for different qualities of oil, based on a consideration of the availability of storage capacity in the SPR sites, the logistics of changing delivery streams, and the availability of ships, pipelines and terminals to move and receive the oil.
(3) Based on the market analysis described in paragraph (d) of this section, DOE may refuse offers or suspend the acquisition process on the basis of Government estimates that project substantially lower oil prices in the future than those contained in offers. If DOE determines there is a high probability that the cost to the Government can be reduced without significantly affecting national energy security goals, DOE may either contract for delivery at a future date or delay purchases to take advantage of projected future lower prices. Conversely, DOE may increase the rate of purchases if prices fall below recent price trends or futures markets present a significant contango and prices offer the opportunity to reduce the average cost of oil acquisitions in anticipation of higher prices.
(4) Based on the market analysis described in paragraph (d) of this section, DOE may refuse offers, decrease the rate of purchase, or suspend the acquisition process if DOE determines acquisition will add significant upward pressure to prices either regionally or on a world-wide basis. DOE may consider recent price changes, private inventory levels, oil acquisition by other stockpiling entities, the outlook for world oil production, incipient disruptions of supply or refining capability, logistical problems for moving petroleum products, macroeconomic factors, and any other considerations that may be pertinent to the balance of petroleum supply and demand.
(c) Fill requirements determination. DOE shall develop SPR fill requirements for each solicitation based on an assessment of national energy security goals, the availability of storage capacity, and the need for specific grades and quantities of crude oil.
(d) Market analysis. (1) DOE shall establish a market value for each crude type to be acquired based on a market analysis at the time of contract award.
(2) In conducting the market analysis, DOE may use prices on futures markets, spot markets, recent price movements, current and projected shipping rates, forecasts by the DOE Energy Information Administration, and any other analytic tools available to DOE to determine the most desirable purchase profile.
(3) A market analysis may also consider recent price changes, private inventory levels, oil acquisition by other stockpiling entities, the outlook for world oil production, incipient disruptions of supply or refining capability, logistical problems for moving petroleum products, macroeconomic factors, and any other considerations that may be pertinent to the balance of petroleum supply and demand.
(e) Evaluation of offers. (1) DOE shall evaluate offers using:
(i) The criteria and requirements stated in the solicitation; and
(ii) The market analysis under paragraph (d) of this section.
(2) DOE shall require financial guarantees from contractors, in the form of a letter of credit or equivalent financial assurance.