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Dutch Take On Gazprom in Battle Over Europe’s Oil-Linked Gas

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Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 10.52.28The legal action coincides with government curbs on output after earthquakes in the Netherlands…

By Kelly Gilblom: May 18, 2016

In its new role as a natural gas importer, the Netherlands wants to make sure it doesn’t overpay.

GasTerra BV, the nation’s biggest buyer and seller of gas, initiated arbitration against Gazprom PJSC’s export unit, the Russian company said Monday. It is seeking a price review for fuel purchased from Europe’s largest supplier under a long-term contract linked to oil, which has rallied this year as the price on gas hubs extended declines.

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The legal action coincides with government curbs on output after earthquakes in the Netherlands, home to the European Union’s largest gas field, which turned it into a net importer of the fuel. Utilities from Germany’s RWE AG to Turkey’s Botas Boru Hatlari Ile Petrol Tasima AS filed arbitration claims against Gazprom PJSC’s export unit after market prices fell below contract rates, with EON SE and Engie SA settling cases with Europe’s biggest gas supplier this year.

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Shell Looks to Offload $40B In Non-Core Assets

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May 17, 2016

Royal Dutch Shell plc (NYSE:RDS.A) is divesting US$40 billion in non-core assets in its attempt to cut capital expenditures and raise cash in a desperate attempt to right its balance sheet wrongs after its takeover of BG Group plc earlier this year left it strapped for cash and laden with nearly US$81 billion worth of debt.

The costly merger at a time of depressed oil prices has rendered Shell the largest publicly owned company in the UK and the largest producer of liquefied natural gas (LNG) in the world.

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Royal Dutch Shell Plc casts fresh doubt on B.C. LNG project due to funding

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Yadullah Hussain | May 5, 2016 6:37 PM ET

Royal Dutch Shell Plc. has cast doubts its liquefied natural gas export project in British Columbia will secure a final investment decision (FID) by the end of this year, further dashing the province ’s hopes of shipping LNG by 2020.

Shell’s LNG Canada in Kitimat is competing for funding dollars with two other company LNG projects, both in the United States, as well as with a chemicals plant in Pennsylvania, within the next 12 months, chief financial officer Simon Henry told investors during a conference call Wednesday.

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Shell cuts billions from spending plans

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Screen Shot 2016-04-20 at 13.50.03Robin Pagnamenta, Energy Editor: May 5 2016

Royal Dutch Shell has accelerated plans to shave billions more dollars from its capital spending this year, as it continues to digest its $54 billion acquisition of BG Group.

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Shell sees slower roll-out of floating LNG

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Mr Henry said Prelude “remains on track to deliver some material cash flow in 2018,” signalling the venture still has some way until start-up.

Angela Macdonald-Smith: Energy Reporter:May 5, 2016

Royal Dutch Shell acknowledges the roll-out of its floating LNG technology will occur much more slowly than anticipated a few years ago, leaving its ground-breaking Prelude venture in WA as potentially its sole FLNG venture for several years.

Shell had targeted a conveyor belt of huge FLNG vessels running of the production line in South Korea, being deployed at remote gas fields worldwide, with several in waters around Asia.

But three projects that could have used five new FLNG vessels have been halted in their tracks, leaving the $US12 billion Prelude venture Shell’s only one for the forseeable future. FLNG ventures planned by other companies in Australia have also fallen foul to cost and price issues.

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Shell’s BG Risk Starts to Pay as Output Added, Costs Slashed

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By Rakteem Katakey: May 4, 2016

Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s record $54 billion acquisition of BG Group Plc is starting to pay off as the assets give it higher production and cash flow, helping it beat analysts’ earnings estimates when it reported quarterly results Wednesday. 

While Europe’s biggest oil company benefits from BG’s assets, it’s cutting expenses quickly enough to ensure the takeover isn’t adding any new costs. Shell’s forecasts for capital spending and operating expenses this year are now at the same level they would have been even if it hadn’t bought BG, Chief Financial Officer Simon Henry said. A majority of the 16 percent increase in oil and gas output came from the acquisition.

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Shell finance chief refuses to rule out further North Sea job losses

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Screen Shot 2016-04-25 at 15.56.32Written by Phil Allan – 04/05/2016 12:34 pm

Shell’s finance chief has refused to rule out further job losses in the North Sea as the oil giant announced its earnings had dropped by $4billion dollars in the first quarter of 2016.

Chief financial officer Simon Henry said the voluntary redundancy packaged announced recently announced as a result of Shell’s acquisition of BG Group, may not be the last to affect the North Sea as the company continues to look at cut costs from its global operation.

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Shell profits tumble following BG merger

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By Jillian Ambrose4 MAY 2016 • 8:32AM

Shell posted a sharp fall in profits in its first set of results since merging with global gas giant BG Group, but nevertheless beat expectations against a backdrop of low oil prices.

The oil major reported first quarter profit of $455m, less than half the $942m posted in its results for the last three months of 2015 and a fraction of its $4.5bn for the same period last year.

On a cost of supplies basis, which the oil industry uses to account for fluctuations in the price of oil, Shell made $1.6bn over the first quarter of the year. This was better than analyst expectations of just over $1bn but still well below the $3.7bn in the first quarter of 2015.

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Shell cuts spending further after BG deal

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LONDON | BY RON BOUSSO AND KAROLIN SCHAPS:Wed May 4, 2016

Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L) on Wednesday cut its 2016 spending by another 10 percent after completing the $54 billion acquisition of BG Group, warning that low oil prices will continue to weigh.

In its first earnings results since the Feb. 15 deal that transformed it into the world’s top liquefied natural gas producer, Shell reported better-than-expected first-quarter results despite a 58 percent drop in profits.

Reflecting the deal, Shell said it sold 12.29 million tonnes of LNG in the first quarter, up 25 percent year on year. Shell’s overall oil and gas output rose 16 percent.

Shell, however, warned that low oil and gas prices, significant maintenance at production sites as well as “substantial redundancy and restructuring charges” will impact second-quarter earnings.

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Shell’s blockbuster BG bid backfires as gas prices deflate

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Danny Fortson:    Published 1 May 2016

Nearly 300 staff gathered in the canteen of BG Group’s sprawling headquarters in Reading on Monday morning to hear what they had long been expecting: nearly all of them were being laid off or being forced to apply for new jobs.

Shell closed its blockbuster takeover of the gas giant in February. Huibert Vigeveno, a rising star within Shell charged with integrating the companies, announced that after an “office footprint review”, BG’s headquarters would shut.

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Profit fall leaves Shell struggling to justify BG deal

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Danny Fortson Published: 1 May 2016

Royal Dutch Shell is set to unveil a steep fall in profits this week, laying bare the challenge for chief executive Ben van Beurden to justify his £35bn takeover of rival BG.

Shell completed the blockbuster deal in February after investors voted it through. Despite counting six weeks of BG’s earnings, analysts expect Europe’s largest oil company to have earned just $1bn (£680m) in profits for the quarter. That compares with a surplus of $3.2bn for the same period a year ago.

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Gazprom and Shell address ongoing and future cooperation

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Screen Shot 2016-04-29 at 21.31.46Friday, Apr 29, 2016

A working meeting between Alexey Miller, Chairman of the Gazprom Management Committee, and Ben van Beurden, Chief Executive Officer of Shell, took place in St. Petersburg today.

The parties addressed the prospects for collaboration between the companies under the Agreement of Strategic Cooperation. An emphasis was placed on a potential asset swap.

The meeting also reviewed the ongoing front-end engineering design (FEED) process for the third production train of the LNG plant within the Sakhalin II project.

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Samsung Heavy loses $4.6-billion FLNG order from Shell on oil drop

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Screen Shot 2016-04-20 at 13.50.03By KYUNGHEE PARK on 4/28/2016

SUNGNAM, South Korea (Bloomberg) — Samsung Heavy Industries Co., the world’s third-largest shipbuilder, said an order to build three floating LNG production facilities was canceled after the energy development project was scrapped amid a plunge in oil prices.

The contract, valued at 5.27 trillion won ($4.6 billion), from Royal Dutch Shell was voided because of the current difficult market conditions, the Sungnam, South Korea-based company said in a regulatory filing Thursday. The shipbuilder won the deal in June on the condition that the project will start only after the client is ready to proceed.

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Shell cancels huge $4.6bn FLNG order at Samsung

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Shell starts staff cut discussions with employees in Australia

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Business | Wed Apr 27, 2016 

Shell (RDSa.L) has started discussions with employees in Australia about job reductions, the company said on Wednesday, as part of plans to cut 10,300 jobs worldwide to lower costs.

“Shell last week commenced conversations with employees about business efficiency and staffing levels – as a result of combining it with the previously BG-owned QGC – a process that will lead to job reductions,” a spokesman said.

Shell is in the process of integrating assets it acquired as part of its $50 billion (£34.2 billion) takeover of gas producer BG Group, including BG’s Australian subsidiary QGC.

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Shell to axe jobs as cost-cuts hit home

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Shell last week informed local staff that it was starting a round of job cuts, with a large portion of workers within the company asked to re-apply for their current positions.

While no fixed target has been set, it is estimated that about 250 jobs around Australia are likely to go as a result of the changes.

The round of job cuts follows Shell’s recent takeover last year of BG Group. The redundancies will remove many of the overlapping roles inherited through the takeover.

Shell had already flagged that it would axe about 2800 jobs worldwide as a result of the BG takeover, as well as a further 7000 around the globe as part of its response to the plunge in oil and gas prices.

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Shell defies order to halt production at Nigeria facility – officials

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YENAGOA, NIGERIA | BY TIFE OWOLABI: Wed Apr 20, 2016

Royal Dutch Shell has failed to halt production at the Gbaran Ubie oil and gas facility in southern Nigeria, contravening a court order for the site to be sealed and raising the prospect of legal action, state government officials said on Wednesday.

A Reuters reporter spoke to workers at the plant who also said production had continued.

A Shell (RDSa.L) spokesman declined to comment.

The facility, in the oil-rich southern Niger Delta region, supplies the Bonny liquefied natural gas (LNG) export terminal and also helps generate electricity, which is scarce in Africa’s top oil producer and most populous nation.

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Exclusive: How ChemChina tried to gatecrash Shell’s BG mega-deal

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Screen Shot 2016-03-15 at 10.28.52LONDON | BY DMITRY ZHDANNIKOV, FREYA BERRY AND RON BOUSSO: Business | Tue Apr 19, 2016

Chemical giant ChemChina approached BG Group with a possible bid late last year, just as Royal Dutch Shell was preparing to close a $52 billion deal to buy the British energy company, seven banking and industry sources with knowledge of the matter said.

Working with investment bank HSBC (HSBA.L), China’s most acquisitive company of the past year flew a delegation to Britain in December and approached BG Chairman Andrew Gould with plans for a full cash bid, two sources close to ChemChina said.

Shell and HSBC declined to comment. ChemChina did not immediately respond to requests for comment. Reuters could not reach Gould for comment.

That trip was eight months after Shell announced the energy sector’s largest deal in a decade and just weeks before the BG purchase received final anti-trust and shareholder clearances.

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Project Prelude – A case study in the generation of real material debt

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Comment By Bill Campbell (Retired HSE Group Auditor Royal Dutch Shell International) on the article published in The Australian: “Shell chief Ben van Beurden backs FLNG program

Interesting use of terminology by BvB, real material cash, what other type is there rather than funny money.

Prelude dumped from super star gamechanger status to important tool, an aspirin rather than a panacea for all ills, has certainly generated, and it appears will continue to generate, something of a debt mountain for RDS. $15 billion and counting has been allocated to finance the venture outflowing since at least 2007/8 at commencement of conceptual and then detailed design. I may be wrong, but I thought the production start date was given at the time when the first metal was cut in the yards in 2010, as 2016 – now it will be a least 10 years till 2018 before the project will start generating revenue. Our esteemed contributor London Lad, who knows a thing or three about project economics, will confirm, if he feels so inclined, that the breakeven point in any project is determined by how quickly capital spending is halted and operational revenue creation is started. The viability of the project per se, as to whether it will ever add value or be a financial millstone, is determined when production eventually starts by the rate of return of the capital invested, and here BvB hopes for real material cash, and lots of it, and hopefully by 2018 the cash will start to flow. Anybody guess how long it will take for this Project to breakeven?

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Buhari urged to stop work on Egina FPSO

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A Lawyer, John Owubokiri, has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to order contractors handling the construction of the Total’s Egina floating production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel to stop work on the platform until all the legal issues are resolved.

Owubokiri, who is a principal partner, Owubokiri & Co, said Buhari recognises the rule of law and due process, therefore, flagrant disrespect of the law by the owners of the Egina project should be dealt with to deter future occurrence.

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Shell Australia chairman Smith urges LNG industry to drop ego and collaborate

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Angela Macdonald-SmithEnergy Reporter: 15 April 2016

Shell Australia chairman Andrew Smith is set to call on LNG industry leaders to drop their egos and get serious about collaboration to reduce costs, deliver better returns and improve competitiveness.

“We must put collaboration ahead of our industry’s natural desire to immortalise our own activities in concrete and steel,” Mr Smith will tell the LNG18 conference in Perth on Friday.

“Australia’s LNG industry will deliver greater economic value and better international competitiveness when we get better at the sharing of infrastructure on commercial terms.”

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Musings about the OPL 245 Shell/ENI corruption scandal and the sinking confidence in Prelude

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I would have thought that Simon Henry’s position as CFO should now be untenable, in view of the apparent lack of effective financial governance in Nigeria while he was CFO. 

By John Donovan

A large number of press articles have appeared recently mentioning Ben van Beurden. 

Since these articles are presumably fed to the press by Shell’s PR team, and Shell is not a one-man company, I checked to see whether other Shell directors have appeared recently in press releases.

The results are somewhat curious. For example, searching for Matthias Bichsel on Google News shows that articles were published about him at least weekly until October last year, but the articles then stopped abruptly. References to Simon Henry seem to have dried up a few weeks ago – until mid-March there were articles on Henry on an almost daily basis, but recently there has been nothing. Harry Brekelmans seems to have had a low profile since his appointment, so it is harder to see whether any change has occurred. Andy Brown has almost as many press articles as Ben van Beurden. 

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Enthusiasm cools for Prelude FLNG

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Chief executive Ben van Beurden said Prelude, Shell’s first attempt at FLNG, should generate “real material cash” in 2018.

But he steered clear of disclosing the construction progress and when the floater would leave its South Korean shipyard for the Browse Basin.

The gas world is watching Prelude’s progress, not least the Woodside Petroleum-led Browse joint venture (which includes Shell) which wants to use FLNG as the development option but is pondering technological advances beyond what Prelude is designed to achieve.

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Shell chief Ben van Beurden backs FLNG program

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  • THE AUSTRALIAN
  • APRIL 13, 2016 12:00AM

Matt ChambersResources reporter: Melbourne

Paul GarveyResources reporter: Perth

Shell chief Ben van Beurden has defended the company’s floating LNG program after the shelving of the Browse LNG project in ­Western Australia and calls from joint-venture partner Woodside Petroleum for Shell to use more advanced FLNG technology to ­reduce costs at the giant gasfields.

Shell is pioneering the use of floating LNG (FLNG) through the $US15 billion ($19.6bn) Prelude project, where the world’s largest vessel is being built to process gas from the Prelude field in the Browse basin.

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Shell CEO van Beurden sees a global carbon price as inevitable

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ABC.Net.Au: by Babs McHugh: 13 April 2016

The head of one of the world’s largest oil and gas companies says market forces will eventually result in a global price on carbon.

Royal Dutch Shell CEO Ben van Beurden made the call at the 18th International LNG Conference underway in Perth.

Mr van Beurden also championed the need for greater innovation in accessing new oil and gas reservoirs at acceptable costs, while acknowledging the tough position producers faced.

“Market conditions are pretty challenging,” he said.

“But at the same time new markets are opening up, like Thailand, Pakistan and even Poland.

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Shell CEO says may sell some North Sea assets to improve portfolio

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PERTH | BY SONALI PAUL: Tue Apr 12, 2016

Royal Dutch Shell could sell some of its older, lower grade North Sea assets to improve the quality of its portfolio, CEO Ben van Beurden said on Tuesday, part of a two-year program to help finance its purchase of gas major BG Group.

After completing the $52 billion acquisition of BG in February, Shell said it would sell $30 billion in assets between 2016 and 2018 to help finance the deal and to maintain its dividend following a sharp drop in oil prices since mid-2014.

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Angela Macdonald-Smith: Energy Reporter

Shell’s global chief executive Ben van Beurden has pointed to a “broad industrial logic” for the Gladstone liquefied natural gas ventures to find ways to work together more closely, signalling a potential restructuring ahead as the oil major seeks to commercialise its Arrow gas resource.

Mr van Beurden said Shell, which recently acquired the Queensland Curtis LNG project as part of its $70 billion takeover of BG Group, was “absolutely convinced” the group would find a way of developing Arrow gas, which is jointly owned by PetroChina.

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Shell to Chevron Awaiting Demand From LNG Market in `Pause Mode’

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James PatonRebecca Keenan and Dan Murtaugh: April 12, 2016

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The over-supplied LNG market is in hiatus as energy giants from Chevron Corp. to Royal Dutch Shell Plc and Woodside Petroleum Corp. await a surge of demand from countries seeking access to energy.

Liquefied natural gas producers are in “pause mode” as low prices have stalled development of new projects, Woodside Chief Executive Officer Peter Coleman said today at the LNG18 conference in Perth. That respite means that coming years demand will exceed supply, causing prices to rise back to higher levels, Shell CEO Ben Van Beurden said.

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Gas industry needs to work harder, innovate: Shell boss

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Screen Shot 2016-03-15 at 10.34.57Peter Klinger – The West Australian on April 12, 2016

Royal Dutch Shell chief executive Ben van Beurden will call for his industry to work harder at cutting costs to make sure the gas sector remains competitive with coal and the fast-growing renewable energy space.

Mr van Beurden, one of the biggest names to address the LNG18 conference in Perth, is expected to tell more than 2000 delegates today his industry needs to constantly innovate, from upstream to downstream activities such as shipping and regasification.

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Delays slow Prelude’s sail-away

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Screen Shot 2016-03-15 at 10.34.57Peter Klinger – The West Australian on April 12, 2016

Royal Dutch Shell’s floating LNG prototype is thought to be two years behind its original schedule, demonstrating the complexity of a new processing module the energy sector hopes will deliver the next generation of liquefaction production.

Prelude’s progress will be a topic of discussion at the LNG18 conference, which kicks off in Perth today and includes sector heavyweights such as Shell chief executive Ben van Beurden.

Shell has never revealed the timetable or budget for Prelude, based on a giant processing vessel built in South Korea to be towed to its namesake gas field off the Kimberley. The latest guidance from Shell is for “material cash in 2018” though that timetable could be challenged.

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Royal Dutch Shell plc: Reasons Behind Moody’s Downgrade

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By Micheal Kaufman on Apr 11, 2016

Moody’s Investor Service reduced Shell’s issuer rating and rating of its guaranteed debt from “Aa1” to “Aa2”, and affirmed company’s Prime-1 commercial paper. Both ratings were under review for a potential downgrade, which was initiated on January, 22, 2016. Since January, the firm expected that the global oil prices will remain weak over the medium term and hinted several downgrades in the upcoming few months.

Shell Finance Netherlands Bv, a subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell – formed for the sole purpose of issuing debt – also had its issuer rating cut from “Aa1” to “Aa2”. Moreover, Shell’s US-based subsidiary, Shell Oil Company, also got its issuer rating cut from “Aa2” to “Aa3” and has been assigned a Negative outlook.

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Gazprom Mulls Selling 49% of Baltic LNG Project’s Shares to Shell

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Russian energy giant Gazprom and Royal Dutch Shell are currently discussing the possibility of selling 49 percent of Gazprom’s shares of the Baltic LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas) plant to Shell, the Dutch company said Monday.

The Baltic LNG is a proposed LNG plant construction in Russia’s Leningrad Region oriented at the European and Latin American markets. It is expected to be commissioned in 2018.

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GE starts production on Shell’s Prelude risers, must withstand a 1-in-10,000-year cyclonic event

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Screen Shot 2016-02-17 at 08.47.47Written by Rita Brown – 11/04/2016 7:38 am

GE Oil & Gas today confirmed it had started production on four high pressure, high temperature dynamic flexible risers destined for Shell’s Prelude, the world’s largest offshore floating facility.

The firm is building them to survive a 1-in-10,000-year cyclonic event, according to the contract spec.

GE will complete the work at its facility in Newcastle, UK, where it has invested more than $21million to expand its production carousel capacity to accommodate the giant kit. They must also be able to withstand high pressures, high operating temperatures, the potential for cold shut-downs and rapid depressurisation.

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Shell under pressure to reduce spending

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Markets | Fri Apr 8, 2016 3:05am EDT

By Ron Bousso

LONDON, April 8 Royal Dutch Shell is under pressure from shareholders to cut annual spending below $30 billion after buying BG Group to ensure it can maintain its dividend given the slow oil price recovery.

Shell and other large oil companies slashed budgets, scrapped huge projects and cut tens of thousands of jobs last year in the face of a slump in oil prices from a June 2014 peak of nearly $116 a barrel to below $40.

Shell reduced spending by $8.4 billion to $28.9 billion last year and for the first time in more than three decades global capital spending in the oil and gas industry, known as capex, is set to fall for a second year in a row.

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Shell’s GameChanger Program: Turning Frogs into Princes

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Screen Shot 2016-03-15 at 10.34.57by Nicholas Newman: Rigzone Contributor: Monday, March 28, 2016

Royal Dutch Shell plc established its reputation for ground-breaking innovation with the design and construction of the world’s first commercial liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant in Algeria in 1964. Today, the need to be ever more innovative is crucial, given the crash in oil and gas prices, which is forcing extreme cuts throughout the industry value chain. In addition, the fossil fuel industry is coming under pressure from the adoption of policies aimed at combating climate change making long-term investments commercially much more difficult to justify. 

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Floating LNG hopes are deflated by Browse, Abadi decisions

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Angela Macdonald-Smith: 28 March 2016

Questions are being asked about whether floating LNG technology will live up to its hype after last week’s decision by Woodside Petroleum’s Browse gas venture to freeze work was followed by the axing of a floating design for the Abadi gas field in Indonesia.

The decisions are seen as major setbacks for the innovative technology that was expected to revolutionise the industry by allowing remote offshore gas fields to be developed more cheaply and with less environmental impact.

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Is It Finally Time To Give Up On Royal Dutch Shell Plc?

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By Royston Wild – Thursday, 24 March, 2016

To suggest the game is up at Shell (LSE: RDSB) could be considered ludicrous given the investor stampede of recent weeks.

The fossil fuel giant has seen its share price explode 30% in the past two months, moving in lockstep with the Brent benchmark’s surge back above the $40 per barrel milestone.

But with data surrounding the oil sector still worsening, I see little reason for crude’s recent march higher, leaving Shell’s share price in danger of a massive reversal.

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Shell says no changes in plans to expand Russian Sakhalin-2 LNG plant

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MOSCOW, March 24 (Reuters) – There are no changes in plans to expand Russia’s Sakhalin-2 liquefied natural gas plant, operated by Royal Dutch Shell and Gazprom, Olivier Lazare, head of Shell’s operations in Russia, said on Thursday.

Gazprom and Shell plan to expand their plant on the Pacific island of Sakhalin, where Japan’s Mitsui and Mitsubishi are also shareholders, to add a further 5.4 million tonnes of annual capacity in 2021.

(Reporting by Vladimir Soldatkin; Writing by Maria Kiselyova; Editing by Alexander Winning)

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Indonesia says Inpex, Shell to invest in Masela onshore LNG project

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JAKARTA, Markets | Thu Mar 24, 2016

Japanese oil firm Inpex Corp and Royal Dutch Shell are expected to invest in the construction of Indonesia’s onshore Masela liquefied natural gas plant, an energy regulator official said on Thursday.

“Inpex and Shell have no plan to withdraw from the Masela block. They will stay, but they need time to redo their plan for onshore,” said Amien Sunaryadi, head of Indonesia’s upstream oil and gas regulator, SKKMigas.

Indonesia’s president on Wednesday rejected Inpex and Shell’s proposal to build the world’s largest floating liquefied natural gas plant in the country’s east, saying an onshore plant would benefit its economy more.

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Australian Energy Giant Woodside Delays Large Offshore L.N.G. Project

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By STANLEY REED: A version of this article appears in print on March 24, 2016, on page B2 of the New York edition

Woodside Petroleum and its partners, including the energy giants Royal Dutch Shell and BP, have decided to delay indefinitely the development of a huge liquefied natural gas project off Western Australia, the company said on Wednesday.

The decision to postpone the project, called Browse, comes as L.N.G. prices in Asia have fallen by around two-thirds since 2014. The slump is attributed to a supply glut set off largely by a building boom and by lower-than-expected demand from major customers like China.

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Where does the cancellation of Browse and Masela leave Prelude?

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Screen Shot 2016-03-23 at 12.53.14From a Regular Contributor

Cancellation of both the Browse and Masela FLNG developments on the same day suggests that the issues about which Bill Campbell has warned may finally have won the day. 

If so, this is a huge climbdown for Shell, with several billion dollars in probable write-offs. 

It’s perhaps not surprising, given the plethora of warnings from technical sources that there were serious risks involved. 

Could Prelude be next to be axed? Parking a multi-billion dollar vessel in cyclone alley for 20 years never seemed like the most appropriate use of the pension funds invested in Shell…

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One Floating LNG Dream Sinks As Another Gets Ready To Float

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One Floating LNG Dream Sinks As Another Gets Ready To Float

Screen Shot 2016-03-15 at 10.34.57Unfortunately for Shell it formally committed to the Prelude development in May, 2011, a time when oil was selling for around $120 a barrel, three-times the current price of around $41/bbl.

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By Tim Treadgold: March 23, 2016

No-one blinked and share prices barely fluttered when a $40 billion plan by Australia’s Woodside Petroleum ngIf: ticker to develop a floating liquefied natural gas (LNG) project was torpedoed earlier today.

However, the knock-on consequences of sinking the Browse project will be felt most acutely at Europe’s biggest oil company, Royal Dutch Shell ngIf: ticker .

The immediate impact on Shell is that it has a 27% interest in the Woodside-led Browse LNG project, but it is also nearing completion of the world’s biggest floating LNG barge, the $12.6 billion Prelude project.

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Woodside halts Australian LNG project

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By Daniel J. Graeber: March 23, 2016

PERTH, Australia, March 23 (UPI) — Australian energy company Woodside said it was putting a hold on the development of its Browse liquefied natural gas project because of market conditions.

Woodside said that, even with front-end engineering and design work completed, weak economic and market conditions meant it was necessary to put a hold on the $50 billion facility.

“We have undertaken a comprehensive and rigorous process to assess all elements of the development,” Woodside CEO Peter Coleman said in a statement. “The decision represents a disciplined approach to large-scale capital investment and is consistent with our requirements for a development concept to be commercially robust across a range of scenarios.”

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Woodside Petroleum drops $40 billion Browse floating LNG project

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Screen Shot 2016-03-15 at 10.34.57Shell, Woodside’s biggest partner in the project, had also spoken cautiously on its prospects…

Angela Macdonald-SmithEnergy Reporter: 23 March 2016

Woodside Petroleum chief executive Peter Coleman is turning a keener eye to potential acquisitions after a decision by the Browse joint venture to ditch a $40 billion-plus floating LNG project freed up the company to chase “attractive” assets.

The indefinite deferral of the Browse project off the north-west coast was forced by the collapse in oil prices, which created an “extremely challenging external environment” for the huge project despite work done to reduce costs, Woodside said.

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Shell Seen as Best Oil Major Wager by Analysts After BG Deal

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Screen Shot 2016-02-17 at 08.47.47By Rakteem Katakey: Bloomberg.comMarch 9, 2016

Ben Van Beurden staked his reputation on Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s $53 billion acquisition of BG Group Plc as crude slumped. Analysts are rewarding the chief executive officer by putting the enlarged company in pole position to exploit a market upturn. 

Shell’s shares will rise about 12.2 percent in the next 12 months, the most among the world’s six biggest non-state oil companies, according to the target prices of analysts compiled by Bloomberg. More than 65 percent of analysts who cover Europe’s largest oil producer recommend buying the stock, the highest share among its peers.

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Shell Said to Mull Sales From U.S. to India in $30 Billion Plan

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By Dinesh NairMatthew Campbell and Rakteem Katakey: Bloomberg.com: 2 March 2016

Royal Dutch Shell Plc is lining up assets for a $30 billion divestment program that may extend from the U.S. and Trinidad to India following its record takeover of BG Group Plc, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

Assets linked to Shell’s interests in Trinidad & Tobago and stakes in oil and gas fields in India may be on the block, two of the people said, asking not to be identified because the plans are confidential. Pipelines in the U.S. are also high on the list, they said, adding that disposal plans aren’t final and will depend on demand.

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Woodside Appoints Former Shell Senior Executive Ann Pickard as Director

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Monday, February 29, 2016

Woodside Petroleum Ltd. announced Monday that its Board has appointed Ann Pickard as a non-executive director effective Feb. 29. Pickard joins Woodside as an independent director.

Woodside Chairman Michael Chaney said that Pickard had significant international business experience.

“The directors are delighted that we have been able to attract a person of Ms Pickard’s background and experience to the company’s Board,” Chaney said.

On Feb. 1 Pickard retired from Royal Dutch Shell plc, where she held numerous positions during her 15-year tenure with the company. Before her retirement from Shell, Pickard served as executive vice president, Arctic and was responsible for Shell’s Arctic exploration efforts. This followed three years as Executive Vice President of Shell’s Exploration and Production business and Country Chair of Shell in Australia, and five years as Executive Vice President, Africa. Pickard joined Shell in 2000 after an 11-year tenure with Mobil prior to its merger with Exxon.

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Job cuts put Shell’s Perth HQ move in shade

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Insiders expect a couple of hundred positions to be cut once Shell merges its Australian corporate function with BG’s presence, which is centred on the QGC division in Queensland.

Shell chief executive Ben van Beurden, who will attend the LNG18 conference in Perth in April, has flagged 2800 post-takeover job cuts worldwide.

“Today we will see the birth of what will be undoubtedly the best company in our industry,” Mr van Beurden said on Monday, when the takeover was completed.

Shell spokesman Paul Zennaro yesterday declined to comment on the number and timing of cuts in Australia, where the enlarged Anglo-Dutch giant has a workforce of 2500 to 3000.

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Concern over increasing frequency of Corrib Gas Flaring

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By John Donovan

A gas flaring event is the burning off of flammable gas released by pressure relief valves as a protection and safety measure during unplanned over-pressuring of plant equipment.

The attached authentic Shell document lists over 260 gas flaring events that have already taken place at the new Bellanaboy Bridge Gas Terminal.

It is noticeable that the unplanned events appear to be increasing, rather than declining e.g. 58 gas flaring events were recorded in just 9 days in January 2016. 

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Shell’s credit rating cut from AA to AA- following £36bn takeover of gas giant BG Group

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By RUPERT STEINER FOR THE DAILY MAIL19 February 2016

Royal Dutch Shell has seen its credit rating slashed following its £36billion takeover of gas giant BG Group.

The credit score of the FTSE 100 oil company – a barometer of its financial strength – was lowered by Fitch from AA to AA-.

Ratings agency Fitch said its outlook on Shell was ‘negative’ in a sign a further cut could follow.

Shell used some of its cash reserves to fund the takeover of BG. Following the completion of the mega-deal on Monday, Shell plans to sell £20billion of assets in the next three years.

However, Fitch warned it downgraded its view on the company because Shell (down 26.5p to 1560.5p) had ‘materially missed the targeted level’ of sell-offs so far. 

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