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Shell may reconsider capital structure if Netherlands

REUTERS STAFF: NOVEMBER 2, 2017

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L) could reconsider its capital structure if the Dutch government goes ahead with plans to remove a tax on dividends, Chief Financial Officer Jessica Uhl said on Thursday.

The new Dutch government has proposed to scrap a 15 percent tax on dividend payments as part of its more business-friendly pledges.

“That hasn’t happened yet but if (it did) then we could take a look at the structure,” Uhl told analysts on Thursday. read more

Honda says fuel from Shell, Total, PSO harms engines in Pakistan

Saad Sayeed: November 2, 2017

ISLAMABAD (Reuters) – Pakistan’s state oil and gas regulator said on Thursday it would investigate a complaint that fuel suppliers including local units of Shell and Total as well as Pakistan State Oil (PSO) had added manganese to their gasoline. Honda Motor Co’s Pakistan subsidiary, Honda Atlas Cars (Pakistan) Ltd., filed the complaint, saying the additive appeared to be damaging engines in its vehicles. Manganese can be added to fuel to make it appear to be of a higher quality but it can reduce fuel economy and potentially harm public health due to emissions. FULL ARTICLE read more

CORRECTED-UPDATE 1-Italy judge expected to rule on Eni, Shell indictment over Nigeria on Dec. 20 – source

(Corrects paragraph six to read “…former…” instead of “…current…” and adds paragraph seven saying Malcolm Brinded temporarily stepped down earlier this year as chairman of the Shell Foundation)

MILAN, Oct 31 (Reuters) – An Italian judge is expected to decide on December 20 whether to send oil majors Eni and Shell to trial over alleged corruption in Nigeria, two legal sources said on Tuesday.

Milan prosecutors have asked for the two companies and some past and present managers, including current Eni CEO Claudio Descalzi, to be indicted in a case revolving around the purchase of a Nigerian oilfield in 2011. read more

Shell beats profit forecasts, targets lower 2017 spending

Ron Bousso

LONDON (Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L) reported an 18 percent rise in third-quarter profit on Tuesday, lowering next year’s capital spending to the bottom of the expected range as it grapples with persistently low oil prices and weak refining margins. The Anglo-Dutch oil major, whose acquisition of BG Group transformed it into the world’s top liquefied natural gas producer, has been under pressure from shareholders to cut annual spending to ensure it can maintain its dividend given the slow recovery in the oil prices LCOc1. “Lower oil prices continue to be a significant challenge across the business, and the outlook remains uncertain,” Chief Executive Officer Ben van Beurden said in a statement. FULL ARTICLE read more

Milan judge expected to decide on Eni, Shell indictment over Nigeria on December 20 – source

OCTOBER 31, 2017 / 3.40 PM

MILAN, Oct 31 (Reuters) – An Italian judge is expected to decide on December 20 whether to send oil majors Eni and Shell to trial over alleged corruption in Nigeria, two legal sources said on Tuesday.

Milan prosecutors have asked for the two companies and some past and present managers, including current Eni CEO Claudio Descalzi, to be indicted in a case revolving around the purchase of a Nigerian oilfield in 2011.

A judge must now rule whether to press charges or dismiss the case. read more

Nigeria recovers $85 mln deposited in Britain in oil licence deal funds – attorney general

Shell has said it was aware that some of the payments it made to Nigeria for rights to the oilfield would go to Malabu, a company associated with former Nigerian oil minister and convicted money launderer Dan Etete.

ABUJA, Oct 27 (Reuters) – Nigeria has recovered $85 million in funds from an oil licence deal that had been deposited in Britain, the West African country’s attorney general said.

President Muhammadu Buhari has, since taking office in 2015, sought help from several nations to recover money he said was taken from public coffers. 

It is not immediately clear who deposited the money in Britain. The money was frozen at the request of prosecutors as a result of an Italian investigation. There is no suggestion of wrongdoing by British authorities. read more

Africa should create gas pricing index as demand rises – ministers

* Africa gas market tiny but growing fast

* Electricity generation is main growth driver 

* Unified pricing system tough in undeveloped markets

“It would be extremely difficult to find a unified pricing system in Africa at the source. If one day Africa is well-connected with pipelines and many different sources, then maybe an index,” said Mounir Bouaziz, Royal Dutch Shell’s vice president for new business development.

By Wendell Roelf and Ed Stoddard

CAPE TOWN, Oct 26 (Reuters) – Africa should develop a gas pricing index based on the cost of electricity set midway between existing global benchmarks to ensure fairer pricing in new export projects on the continent, two African ministers said. The idea is being floated when the world’s poorest continent, where 600 million people are without electricity, is turning to liquefied natural gas (LNG) as a cheaper way to power up amid plentiful global supply. FULL ARTICLE read more

Shell says can pump oil from Brazil’s pre-salt fields below $40/bbl

Simon WebbAlexandra Alper: OCTOBER 25, 2017

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell will participate in Brazil’s deepwater oilfield auction on Friday and is confident it can pump oil from the fields on offer for less than $40 a barrel, a top Shell executive said. Brazil will hold its first auction in four years for its pre-salt oilfields on Friday. The eight deepwater blocks on offer hold billions of barrels in reserves, and for the first time, Brazil will allow foreign oil firms to operate the fields in the region. Shell believes it could pump oil from the pre-salt fields below the company’s target breakeven cost of $40 per barrel, Wael Sawan, Executive Vice President for Shell’s deepwater division, told Reuters. The high quality of the reserves and the prolific output volume that the pre-salt wells can produce make them an attractive proposition, he said. FULL ARTICLE read more

Iraq may offer Total, Chevron terms different from Shell for Majnoon field development

OCTOBER 21, 2017

BAGHDAD (Reuters) – Iraq may offer Chevron (CVX.N) and Total (TOTF.PA) terms to develop the Majnoon oilfield different from those it had given to Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L), Iraqi Oil Minister Jabar al-Luaibi said on Saturday. Iraq will develop the Majnoon oil field in southern Iraqi by its own means until it can find a foreign partner, Luaibi told reporters, adding that no company has been selected yet. Luaibi said on Oct. 9 that Chevron and Total are among the companies that have expressed interest in developing Majnoon that Shell has said it wants to leave because of unfavourable changes to fiscal terms. Reporting by Ahmed Rasheed, writing by Maher Chmaytelli; Editing by Angus MacSwan. SOURCE read more

Zambian villagers win right to sue Vedanta in English courts

Barbara Lewis: OCTOBER 13, 2017 / 2:33 PM

London’s Court of Appeal on Friday threw out miner Vedanta’s attempt to block the Zambians’ legal action over alleged pollution of their villages. Vedanta said in a statement it would seek the right to appeal to the Supreme Court, the highest in the English legal system, adding the decision was on jurisdiction only and “was not a ruling or a determination on the merits of the claims”. Three senior High Court judges dismissed an appeal by Vedanta and its Zambian subsidiary Konkola Copper Mines (KCM)against a ruling in May last year when a High Court judge decided the claim could proceed in the English courts on behalf of 1,826 Zambian villagers. FULL ARTICLE read more

Shell buys NewMotion charging network in first electric vehicle deal

Karolin Schaps: OCTOBER 12, 2017 / 1:23 PM

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L) has agreed to buy Dutch-based NewMotion, the owner of one of Europe’s largest electric vehicle charging networks, marking the company’s first deal in electric mobility as demand for cleaner vehicles is expected to soar. Shell said NewMotion, which manages over 30,000 charging points for electric vehicles in Western Europe and offers access to thousands more, will operate in parallel to Shell’s program of rolling out fast charging points at its forecourts. “They’re complementary offers. One is fast charging on the go on the forecourt and the other is a slightly slower rate of charge at the workplace or at home. At this stage there are no plans to integrate the two,” Shell’s vice-president for new fuels, Matthew Tipper, told journalists. Shell is installing electric vehicle charging points at retail stations in Britain, the Netherlands, Norway and the Philippines. FULL ARTICLE read more

Shell seeks buyers for Oman field stake – sources

The sale process is led by investment bank Rothschild, the sources said. Shell and Rothschild did not respond to requests for comment. The Mukhaizna heavy oil field, operated by Occidental Petroleum (OXY.N), reached an average oil production rate of 127,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day in 2016, according to Occidental’s annual report. Shell is not selling its 34 percent interest in Petroleum Development Oman (PDO) which operated more than 160 oil fields mostly in the centre and south of the Middle East sultanate, according to the sources. FULL ARTICLE read more

Chevron starts LNG output at Australia’s Wheatstone, first cargo expected in weeks

MELBOURNE, Oct 9 (Reuters) – Chevron Corp said on Monday it has started producing liquefied natural gas (LNG) at its Wheatstone project in Australia, slightly later than expected, and plans to ship its first cargo soon. The LNG market will be focused on how smoothly Wheatstone progresses following the troubled start-up at Chevron’s bigger Gorgon LNG project. Both projects are fed from natural gas fields offshore the state of Western Australia. “The first cargo is on track to be shipped in the coming weeks,” Chevron Corp said in a statement. It had originally hoped to start exporting from Wheatstone in middle of 2017. Wheatstone is the sixth out of eight projects in a $200 billion Australian LNG construction boom that is now in its final stretch. The two remaining ones are Royal Dutch Shell’s Prelude floating LNG project and Ichthys, led by Japan’s Inpex. FULL ARTICLE read more

Citizens must “flood the courts” in fight for climate justice: economist

Adela Suliman: OCTOBER 4, 2017

LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – The world faces a ticking time bomb in the form of global warming, and recent disasters caused by extreme weather should motivate individuals to urgently seek “climate justice”, said leading U.S. economist Jeffrey Sachs.

The U.N. special adviser urged citizens to “flood the courts” with legal cases demanding the right to a safe and clean environment, and to pursue major polluters such as big oil companies and negligent governments for liability and damages. read more

Interview – Shell Netherlands CEO: More large wind projects wanted

Toby SterlingStefano Berra: OCTOBER 5, 2017

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) – As the Netherlands struggles to meet its renewable energy goals, Shell’s country chief executive sees its role as the architect of big, high-risk projects such as wind turbine farms — for the time being.

In an interview, Marjan van Loon said Shell had joined a coalition of companies urging the Dutch government to greatly increase its ambitions for offshore wind farms from its current plan for 5 tenders of 700 megawatt farms. read more

Shell working to fix gas disruption at Ireland’s Corrib field

(Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L) and Gas Networks Ireland (GNI) are working to remove unodourised gas that entered the network from the country’s Corrib gas field and has curbed output since last week, Shell said.

Due to a technical problem at the Shell-operated Bellanaboy Bridge gas terminal in Ireland, unodourised gas entered the network, forcing GNI to ask local customers to switch off their gas meters on Sept. 22-23, a Shell spokesperson said.

Unodourised gas cannot be easily detected as it cannot be smelt. Normally odourants are added before the gas reaches customers so people can detect gas leaks by scent. Undetected gas can lead to an explosion or fire. read more

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