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BP buys, while Shell sells: a recap of recent deal making by the majors

Written by Mark Lammey – 20/12/2016 6:00 am

While Shell has been selling assets to make good on its $30billion divestment plan for 2016-18, BP has flashed the cash with a number of big investments.

Shell said yesterday that it had raised $1.65billion (£1.33billion) in asset sales, while rival oil major BP has revealed plans to invest heavily on African licences.

Shell will make $1.4billion from the sale of a 31.2% stake in refiner Showa Shell Sekiyu to Japan’s Idemitsu Kosan, the firm said yesterday.

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Shell to sell Australian aviation fuels unit to Viva Energy

Shell to sell Australian aviation fuels unit to Viva Energy

by Angela Macdonald-Smith: 19 December 2016

Royal Dutch Shell has struck a $US250 million ($343 million) deal to sell its local aviation fuels division to Viva Energy in a further slimming down of its downstream operations in Australia.

The sale follows the oil giant’s $2.9 billion divestment of its other refining and fuels activities to Viva in 2014 and comes amid heightened speculation that Shell is getting set to offload its remaining stake in Woodside Petroleum.

The deal, expected to formally close by md-2017, will see the Shell brand still used for the aviation refuelling business under a licensing deal similar to the arrangement Viva has to use the logo for its petrol retailing business. Regulatory approvals still need to be secured.

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UK police spied on us, protesters tell inquiry

Shell to Sea, an environmental protest group, claims it was infiltrated by a British officer between 2004 and 2006: MARK STEDMAN/PHOTOCALL IRELAND

By:  Ellen Coyne – The Times

A Mayo protest group that claims it was spied on by a British police officer has asked to be included in a UK inquiry into undercover practices.

Shell to Sea, an environmental activist group that protested against the Corrib gas pipeline, believes it was infiltrated by Mark Kennedy when he was in the Republic.

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Shell to offload Dragon gas port

Danny Fortson: December 18 2016: The Sunday Times

Shell has begun quietly sounding out potential buyers for its share of a giant gas- import complex in west Wales.

The FTSE 100 company owns half of Dragon LNG, a terminal at Milford Haven that reheats super-chilled liquid natural gas after it is delivered by tankers. The site has the capacity to provide 10% of Britain’s gas needs.

Petronas, Malaysia’s state oil producer, owns the other half and is likely to have first right of refusal. Dragon is yet another asset that has been put up for sale by Shell, which has pledged to raise $30bn (£24bn) through a global disposal programme to offset the cost of its takeover of rival BG.

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Corruption of Police by Shell

Corruption of Police by Shell

Printed below is an extract from a current submission to The Pitchford Inquiry by the Shell to Sea organisation in Ireland. As can be seen, it very much involves Shell.

The Pitchford Inquiry is investigating undercover policing activities in England and Wales. Pressure is mounting to also cover the activities of undercover British police in Ireland.

EXTRACT FROM THE SUBMISSION

Corruption of Police by Shell

In March 2013 Shell to Sea  contacted a reporter in the London-based Observer newspaper regarding a series of allegations which had appeared consistently since September 2012 on a website co-founded by John Donovan and his late father Alfred, available at www.royaldutchshellplc.com. It took from March until publication on 11 August to research and legal-proof the article written by award-winning journalist Ed Vuillamy                            (http://www.theguardian.com/books/2013/may/18/ed-vulliamy-ryszard-kapuscinski-award) under the heading ‘Strange tale of Shell’s pipeline battle, the Gardaí and £30,000 of booze’. http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/aug/10/shell-pipeline-protests-county-mayo  While the reportage of alcohol provision to the police came as no surprise, we find the claim made by Mr Neil Rooney of OSSL as quoted below to be, indeed, sinister:

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Fitzgerald should seek answers on undercover British police in Ireland

By:  Shell to Sea

Open Letter to the Irish Minister of Justice, Francis Fitzgerald

Shell to Sea are calling for the Minister of Justice, Francis Fitzgerald to seek that the inquiry into the behaviour of undercover British police (entitled the Pitchford Inquiry) be extended to include the activities of undercover police in Ireland.

The Pitchford Inquiry is so far only investigating undercover policing activities in England and Wales, however the German Government, the Scottish Government and Northern Ireland’s Justice Minister, Claire Sugden have all called for the remit of the inquiry to be widen to include the activities of the undercover British police in their jurisdictions.

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Shell finance boss tipped to take over the top job cashed in stock worth £1m days before he suddenly quit

By Rachel Millard For The Daily Mail: 21:58, 15 December 2016 

A finance boss at Royal Dutch Shell who was tipped to take over the top job has suddenly left – just days after he sold stock worth £1million.

Credited with leading the firm’s £41billion takeover of oil and gas group BG last year, Simon Henry was a key lieutenant of chief executive Ben van Beurden.

But the 55-year-old’s departure was announced yesterday to the shock of the markets. Relatively unknown internal finance executive Jessica Uhl has been appointed in his place.

It emerged Henry sold more than £1million of shares on December 1, within 24 hours of the historic Opec deal to cut production that then sent the price of oil soaring.

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Debt Reduction, Cost Discipline Core Challenges for new Shell CFO

By SARAH KENT: Dec 15, 2016 8:33 am ET

Royal Dutch Shell PLC’s new finance chief has two big challenges: a mountain of debt and the pressure to keep down costs.

The British-Dutch oil giant on Thursday said its new chief financial officer will be Jessica Uhl, who is currently the top finance official for one of Shell’s most important units: Integrated Gas.

The BG merger bolstered Shell’s leading position in global natural-gas markets and led to the creation of the gas unit where Ms. Uhl worked. It also caused Shell’s net debt to balloon to $86.63 billion at the end of the third quarter…

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Shell finance chief Simon Henry to leave after 30 years with the oil major

Caitlin Morrison deputy digital editor at City A.M: Thursday 15 December 2016 8:47am

Royal Dutch Shell announced today that finance chief Simon Henry will step down in March 2017, to be replaced by Jessica Uhl.

Henry – who was appointed to the Lloyds Bank board in 2014 – has been with Shell for over 30 years, and has been chief financial officer for seven.

“I have been privileged to spend the past 34 years working with great colleagues, in a great company,” said Henry.

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Royal Dutch Shell – Income Investors Should Look Elsewhere

Casey Hoerth: Dec. 14, 2016 11:09 AM ET

Summary

Shell plans on between $25 billion and $30 billion in capex next year, with flexibility to the downside.

I do not expect Shell to achieve cash flow balance in 2016, even with asset sales.

I continue to recommend other energy companies over Royal Dutch Shell, until either oil prices recover more or until Shell does something else to achieve balance.

Over the course of 2016 I haven’t recommended much when it comes buying to upstream or integrated oil companies. The reason was that I felt many still weren’t doing enough to balance their money coming in versus money going out. The CEO of one of my favorite companies, in their latest analyst day, recently quipped that energy companies couldn’t afford to wait to be ‘bailed out’ by higher oil prices.

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After Alaska flop, Shell’s search for oil moves closer to home

By Ron Bousso | LONDON

In the waters off Malaysia, Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L) is finding gas quickly and cheaply to replenish depleting fields where only a few years ago geologists had lost hope of discovering any new reserves.

The Anglo-Dutch group is combining the latest technology with the wisdom of industry veterans to unlock new oil and gas deposits where it already operates, usually within 20 km (12 miles) of existing platforms.

The result has been a string of finds which, while modest in size, can generate cash rapidly to suit an era of drastically reduced exploration budgets across the energy industry.

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Shell awards JGC contract for completion of Prelude LNG vessel

Written by Mark Lammey – 09/12/2016 3:58 pm

Japanese engineering firm JGC Corporation has won a contracted to support the completion of Shell’s Prelude floating LNG facility.

JGC said the construction work on the giant vessel − which is 1,600 ft long, 240ft wide and weighs in at 600,000 tonnes − was in its final stages in South Korea.

Once commissioned, it will produce 3.6million tonnes of LNG per year from the Prelude and Concerto gas fields, in the Browse Basin, off Australia.

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