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Is this the city car of the future? Shell reveals bizarre bug eyed vehicle with a flip up front

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Screen Shot 2016-04-23 at 07.27.30Shell’s city concept car uses a third less energy compared to the average car, as it gets 107 miles per gallon and is only 1.5m high, 2.5m long and 1.3m wide – making parking in the city a breeze. One unique feature to this futuristic car is that there are now doors that open out, in order for riders to get inside they have to pull the top up and climb in

By STACY LIBERATORE FOR DAILYMAIL.COM: 23 April 2016

In about 50 years, three-quarters of the world is expected to live in cities, while the number of cars on the road will double.

While most manufacturers are developing electric solutions, unsurprisingly Shell has designed a vehicle that they say ‘is intended to inspire thinking about maximizing personal mobility, while minimizing energy use’.

Shell’s city concept car uses a third less energy compared to the average, as it gets 107 miles per gallon and is only 1.5m high, 2.5m long and 1.3m wide – making parking in the city a breeze.

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The new oil order

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Apr 23rd 2016

FOR generations, oil and stability have gone hand in hand in Saudi Arabia. The puritanically conservative kingdom has used its oil wealth to buy loyalty at home and friends abroad. But since King Salman came to the throne last year, his 30-year-old son, Muhammad, has injected unpredictability into the Middle East.

Critics consider the deputy crown prince a hothead, whose dangerous obsession with Iran, Saudi Arabia’s rival, is feeding sectarianism and fraying relations with America. At home, though, the impetuousness of Muhammad bin Salman may be just what Saudi Arabia needs to start weaning itself off oil, the price of which has fallen sharply over the past 18 months. A big test comes on April 25th, when the prince is due to unveil the kingdom’s long-delayed “Vision” reform plan.

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Bulgaria anti-monopoly watchdog raids more oil firms in fuel inquiry

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Commodities | Fri Apr 22, 2016

Bulgaria’s anti-monopoly watchdog said it had raided the offices of Eco Petroleum, part of Hellenic Petroleum, and Shell Bulgaria, owned by Royal Dutch Shell, as part of an investigation into possible cartel agreements.

The inquiry follows complaints by Bulgarians over high fuel costs despite a plunge in global oil prices and a call by Prime Minister Boiko Borisov for the competition authority to hasten checks on the fuel sector.

“Employees of the Commission for Protection of Competition are carrying out surprise checks on site at the offices of Eco Bulgaria and Shell Bulgaria,” the commission said in a statement on Friday.

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Oil washout

Screen Shot 2016-04-22 at 21.42.31Ed Crooks: 22 April 2016

They wanted a freeze, but all they got was a wash-out. The 18 oil-producing countries that met in Doha on Sunday were supposed to finalise an agreement to hold production at January’s levels, but instead the meeting broke up in acrimony and recriminations. John Kemp at Reuters suggested Saudi Arabia was turning the “oil weapon” on its rival Iran.

The FT’s Roula Khalaf wrote that the failure of the talks highlighted the rise of Mohammed bin Salman, Saudi Arabia’s 30 year-old deputy crown prince. His growing influence and the waning authority of veteran oil minister Ali al-Naimi add a new element of unpredictability to Saudi policy.  Bloomberg Business Week had a long and fascinating interview with Prince Mohammed. As President Barack Obama visited Saudi Arabia, David Gardner wrote that the kingdom’s 70-year bargain with the US, promising security in return for a steady flow of oil, was becoming frayed.

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Shell sidesteps electric bandwagon with petrol-powered concept car

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BEIJING | BY JAKE SPRING: Fri Apr 22, 2016

Royal Dutch Shell PLC (RDSa.L) unveiled a high-efficiency petrol-burning concept car in China on Friday, to show the world’s biggest electric vehicle (EV) market that there is a lot of mileage left in conventional internal combustion engines.

Shell, one of the largest producers of automotive fuel, said it could take decades before EVs help arrest a rise in exhaust emissions, and that its concept car – which it has no intention of mass producing – demonstrates what can be done now.

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Shell, Agip, Chevron tax evaders, Gov Dickson writes Buhari

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Okafor Ofiebor/Port Harcourt: 21 April 2016

The face-off between Bayelsa State government and multinational oil companies deepened on Thursday with Governor Henry Seriake Dickson, seeking the intervention of the Presidency over tax evasion, flagrant disregard of laws and non-compliance with the rules and regulations of the country.

A press statement from Bayelsa Govt House named the companies that evade tax as Shell Petroleum Company of Nigeria Limited (SPDC); Nigerian Agip Oil Company Limited (NAOC); Chevron Nigeria Limited (CNL); Consolidated Oil (CL); Conoil Producing; Brass LNG and Aiteo Energy.

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Shell eyes $700 million exit from Gabon – sources

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By Freya Berry and Ron Bousso

LONDON (Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell <RDSa.L> is working on selling out of its onshore assets in Gabon, according to two sources familiar with the matter, seeking to refocus its African presence.

Bids are due in June for the fields, which one source estimated could be worth around $700 million (488.55 million pound). However the second person said that price indications were currently below Shell’s expectations and that no sale may occur.

“Shell continuously evaluates opportunities for our global portfolio in line with our business strategy,” a company spokesman said on Thursday.

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Royal Dutch Shell Plc: Notice of 2016 Annual General Meeting

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LONDON, April 21, 2016 /PRNewswire/ —

Royal Dutch Shell plc (the “Company”)(NYSE: RDS.A) (NYSE: RDS.B) announces that its 2016 Annual General Meeting (the “AGM”) will be held at the Circustheater, Circusstraat 4, 2586 CW The Hague, The Netherlands at 10:00 (Dutch time) on Tuesday May 24, 2016. The Notice of Annual General Meeting (the “Notice”) can be viewed and downloaded from http://www.shell.com/agm.

The AGM will be webcast on the day so shareholders unable to attend in person can still follow proceedings. More information about the webcast arrangements can be found in the Notice and via the website referred to above.

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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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Shell starts voluntary redundancy process for Dutch staff

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Wed Apr 20, 2016

Shell said it had started a voluntary severance process in the Netherlands as part of a plan to cut around 10,300 jobs worldwide.

The oil company is under pressure to rein in costs as a slump in oil prices has hit its profits.

“Shell can confirm it has introduced a selective voluntary severance programme in The Netherlands,” a spokesman said.

The programme could be rolled out elsewhere and staff would be notified before external announcements are made, he said.

Shell has around 11,000 directly employed staff in the Netherlands.

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Shell offers well-paid office staff redundancy, hundreds of jobs to go

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20 April 2016

Shell is offering office personnel earning more than €75,000 a voluntary package to leave the company, the AD says on Wednesday, quoting union and company sources.

The company hopes this will enable it to cut the workforce by hundreds of jobs without launching an official reorganisation, the paper says.

The offer has been made to staff at Shell’s training and R&D centres in Rijswijk and Amsterdam as well as at the Shell HQ in The Hague and at NAM, Shell’s natural gas joint venture with ExxonMobil.

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SHELL TO SLASH 2,000 NETHERLANDS JOBS

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by Janene Pieters: 20 April 2016

Shell is cutting some 2 thousand jobs in the Netherlands. The oil company aims to get rid of 15 to 20 percent of the abut 10 thousand employees working in Amsterdam and Rijswijk as part of a cost-cutting plan to cope with the low oil prices, AD reports.

The company launched a voluntary departure scheme. Office staff with a salary of 75 thousand euros per year or higher can resign voluntarily for compensation. Employees can register for voluntary departure until July 1st.

According to union FNV, Shell is hoping to avoid an official reorganization with the voluntary departure scheme. “Shell first wants to see whether enough employees volunteer”, director Egbert Schellenberg said to the newspaper.

Employees working at the Pernis refinery and the petrochemical complex in Moerdijk do not qualify for the voluntary departure scheme as those two branches already face staff shortages.

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Malabu Oil deal: EFCC quizzes SNEPCO boss over $1.092b settlement cash

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20 April 2016

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission( EFCC) has quizzed the Managing Director of Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company Limited (SNEPCO), Mr. Bayo Bashir Ojulari over the controversial  Malabu oil block (OPL 245) deal.

The anti-graft agency is specifically seeking the whereabouts of $1,092 billion paid by SNEPCO and Nigeria Agip Exploration Limited (NAE) into an escrow account.

It was learnt that investigators were trying to determine last night whether the cash had been used  for the settlement of the dispute on the oil block or diverted elsewhere.

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Update from NAM on Shell/Exxon induced Dutch Earthquakes

Screen Shot 2016-04-19 at 20.31.49Update from NAM on Shell/Exxon induced Dutch Earthquakes

By John Donovan: 19 April 2016

Printed below in italics is a Google translation of information published in Dutch today by NAM, the Shell/Exxon Joint Venture company.

It is about the earthquakes inadvertently generated by NAM gas production activity in and around the Groningen Gas field in the Netherlands.

The damage arising from the earthquakes, which are expected to increase in intensity, will cost untold billions to deal with.

Maintaining current production level of 27 billion m3

On April 19th NAM published its proposal for future gas production from the Groningen gas field. It is the first step in a stepwise decision-making process that should lead before October 1, 2016 to a final government decision on gas production from the Groningen gas field. Given the complexity and societal concern about the earthquake record, the Minister of Economic Affairs has decided on extensive consultation with authorities, experts and residents for gas production decision.

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The caustic views of Sir Henri Deterding about lawyers

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Screen Shot 2016-03-15 at 10.34.57By John Donovan

Today came news that Shell is slashing its panel of international law firms by 97%.

It therefore seems appropriate to reflect on the views about lawyers expressed by the extraordinary Dutchman most responsible for building Royal Dutch Shell into a global business: Sir Henri Deterding.

For some reason, although he was the undisputed head of the Royal Dutch Shell Group for almost 40 years, and said to be The Most Powerful Man in the World, his name now seems verboten at Shell. 

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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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Nick Goodway: Why do we pay Shell to extract our oil assets?

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By Nick Goodway: 19 April 2016

My eye was caught yesterday by a document from Royal Dutch Shell snappily entitled Report on Payments to Governments for 2015. (I know, I don’t lead a very exciting life.) This is one of the myriad new reports that corporates are forced to release each year in the interests of greater transparency and good governance.

But for once, alongside the hundreds of such reports I have binned, there was some interesting stuff here. In short, the report details how much Shell paid to each government in the countries in which it operates in terms of their share of production, royalties, taxes and fees.

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Shell slashes external lawyers

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Shell slashes global panel from 11 to six post-BG merger

Shell scraps 97 per cent of global panel

On the final letter received from Simmons & Simmons before they retreated from the melee, we ended up with someone too timid to even disclose their name. Weren’t they supposed to frighten us?

19 April 2016

Simmons & Simmons is one of the law firms given the boot by Shell.

I have no idea if this is anything to do with my correspondence with Simmons & Simmons a while back.

They were brought in by Shell, no doubt at great cost, to fend off our applications to Shell under the Data Protection Action 1998.

The information we were obtaining was causing immense damage to Shell. For example, we found out from Shell internal communications about the cloak and dagger activity directed towards us by Shell Corporate Affairs Security.   

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Britain paid Shell to keep its North Sea oil fields running

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Shell and Iberdrola have been found guilty of fraud and market manipulation in California’s energy market: MAURIZIO RELLINI/CORBIS

Screen Shot 2016-03-15 at 10.34.57Marcus Leroux: 19 April 2016

Britain was the only country where Royal Dutch Shell enjoyed a negative effective tax rate last year, according to a report released by the company.

While the second-largest oil group in the world paid billions to governments from Nigeria to Norway, the payments it received from the British government indicate the toll taken on Treasury coffers by the collapse in the price of oil.

Shell received a net $123 million (£86 million) from the UK government last year, largely because of changes to the tax system that entitled it to a rebate relating to its historic Brent oilfield.

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Shell moving some jobs from New Orleans to Houston

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By Jennifer Larino, NOLA.com | The Times-Picayune: 18 APRIL 2016

Shell will relocate some jobs from New Orleans to Houston as it moves forward with plans to cut its global workforce by 10,000 employees and contractors. The company started cutting jobs last year in response to low oil prices.

Details are sparse on how the global cuts affect the roughly 1,900 workers based in One Shell Square in downtown New Orleans. Shell says it does not provide layoff counts by region. Workers close to the situation have reported that jobs may be moving to Houston in addition to cuts. They asked not to be named to protect their jobs.

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Botched Doha deal undermines OPEC credibility, oil prices tumble

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By REUTERSPUBLISHED: 18 April 2016

By Henning Gloystein

SINGAPORE, April 18 (Reuters) – Oil prices tumbled on Monday after a meeting by major exporters in Qatar collapsed without an agreement to freeze output, leaving the credibility of the OPEC producer cartel in tatters and the world awash with unwanted fuel.

Tensions between Saudi Arabia and Iran were blamed for the failure, which revived industry fears that major government-controlled producers will increase their battle for market share by offering ever-steeper discounts.

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Nigeria seals Shell’s Gbaran Ubie oil and gas facility on court order -statement

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Mon Apr 18, 2016 8:15pm GMT

YENAGOA, Nigeria, April 18 (Reuters) – A Nigerian state government has sealed the Gbaran Ubie oil and gas production facility owned by Royal Dutch Shell on court orders, it said in a statement on Monday.

“The Gbaran Ubie facility was developed by Shell… in Bayelsa State without a development permit,” the government, based in the Niger Delta, said.

(Reporting by Tife Owolabi; Writing by Ulf Laessing; editing by John Stonestreet)

© Thomson Reuters 2016 All rights reserved

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John Donovan, Shell’s Nightmare: Secret Litigation Settlements

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By John Donovan

I published an article earlier today listing a number of settlements that Shell has made in various litigation claims ranging from fraud to complicity in murder. 

Shell’s settlement of my first three High Court claims against the company were all shrouded in secrecy. 

See: High Court papers unveil ‘secret’ Shell writ losses.” 

The same applied in respect of three further High Court actions, all settled secretly by Shell, including all my legal costs. 

Screen Shot 2016-04-20 at 21.02.41Extract from my most recent ebook “John Donovan, Shell’s nightmare”:

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Nothing New About Shell Settling Fraud Cases

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From April 2016:

Shell guilty of energy fraud and market manipulation in the US

From August 2004:

Shell settles fraud case for $150M

Oil company agrees to pay SEC for overstating reserves, also settles market abuse case in Britain.

The settlements are not just for fraud but range all the way to complicity in murder.

New York Times: “Shell Settles Dumping Suit for $3 Million“: 9 February 1995

New York Times: “SHELL SETTLES ROYALTIES CASE FOR $33.5 MILLION“: 21 March 2002

Shell Oil Company Limestone Township $26 million settlement: December 2007

Plaintiffs win $66 million from Shell Oil after making the mistake of relying on Shell’s “honesty and integrity”: 17 May 2008

Houston Chronicle: Shell will pay millions to settle air pollution suit: 23 April 2009

Guardian: Shell agrees to pay compensation for execution of Saro-Wiwa: June 2009

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NIGERIA: MAJOR GAS FACILITY WON’T BE REPAIRED UNTIL MAY

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Screen Shot 2016-03-15 at 10.34.57BY CONOR GAFFEY ON 4/18/16 AT 12:32 PM

Power outages in Nigeria are likely to persist until May as oil and gas giant Shell struggles to repair a major facility damaged by militants.

Nigeria’s Vice President Yemi Osinbajo visited the Forcados Export Terminal in the southern Delta state over the weekend. The facility, which is run by a subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell, known as the Shell Petroleum Development Corporation, was subject to an attack in February when an underwater pipeline was hit by an explosion.

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Shell says theft from its Nigerian oil pipeline network fell in 2015

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Business | Mon Apr 18, 2016 9:02am BST

Theft of crude oil from the pipeline network of Shell’s Nigerian subsidiary fell to 25,000 barrels per day (bpd) in 2015, the company said on Monday, roughly 32 percent less than the previous year.

The number of sabotage-related spills on the SPDC network also declined to 93 in 2015, compared with 139 the previous year, Shell said in its annual sustainability report.

It attributed the decrease to divestments in the Niger Delta and increased surveillance and security by the Nigerian government, but said theft and sabotage were still responsible for around 85 percent of spills from SPDC operations.

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Shell’s divi dominance underlines yield conundrum

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By Taha Lokhandwala: 18 April 2016

According to Capita UK Dividend Monitor, Shell will account for £1 in every £7.50 paid out in UK dividends this year, up from £1 in every £10 last year.

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FULL FT ARTICLE

Major Oil Exporters Fail to Agree on Production Freeze

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By STANLEY REED and ANDREW E. KRAMERA version of this article appears in print on April 18, 2016, on page B1 of the New York edition

DOHA, Qatar — Officials from 18 oil-producing nations failed on Sunday to reach a deal to freeze oil production at current levels.

The meeting of officials, representing most of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries as well as Russia, had been intended to calm the markets and convince them that the two leading oil exporters, Russia and Saudi Arabia, were cooperating. But with officials coming up short on Sunday, the meeting may end up being a blow to confidence that could send oil prices tumbling.

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Shell and Scottish Power guilty of energy fraud and market manipulation in the US

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By Alex Brummer For Daily Mail, In San Francisco

Shell and Iberdrola-owned Scottish Power have been found guilty of fraud and market manipulation which led to power blackouts in the San Francisco bay area.

The finding by a Federal Energy Regulation Commission (FERC) judge alleges that Shell and Iberdrola made £809million of illegal profits which may now have to be repaid to the citizens of California.

Evidence presented during the hearings says that energy traders at Shell and Iberdrola used similar tactics to the collapsed energy firm Enron to drive up the prices which Californian residents had to pay on their long-term contracts.

As a result Shell received £548million in excessive profits and Iberdrola £261million. At the time Scottish Power, which has previously won Money Mail’s Wooden Spoon Award for poor customer service, was a quoted UK company and owner of PPM Energy in California.

It was heavy losses in the US which weakened the Scottish firm and led to it being sold to the Spanish power giant Iberdrola in 2007.

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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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Firms overcharged Californians $1.1 billion during energy crisis, judge says

Screen Shot 2016-04-16 at 09.06.47By Rob Nikolewski: April 15, 2016

An administrative law judge in Washington D.C. slammed two energy companies, saying they overcharged California consumers for long-term contracts during the state’s energy crisis of 2000-2001, with a tab exceeding $1.1 billion, including interest.

“The public was clearly, palpably, seriously harmed by the energy crisis,” said Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Judge Steven A. Glazer in a 219-page ruling released late Wednesday that charged Shell Energy North America and Iberdrola Renewables of gouging the state.

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Eyes on Doha

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By Ed Crooks: April 15, 2016

All eyes in the oil market this weekend will be on Sunday’s meeting in Doha, which will bring together leading producers including Russia and most – although perhaps not all – of the members of Opec. Expectations that the countries will agree to freeze production, encouraged this week by statements from Russian and Iraqi representatives, have helped drive Brent crude prices up more than 60 per cent from about $27 per barrel in January to around $44 today.  The heads of some of the world’s largest trading houses have concluded that for oil producers, the worst is probably now over.

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Shell’s UK boss says it will strike ‘innovative deals’ for its North Sea assets

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Written by Erikka Askeland – 15/04/2016 7:54 am

Oil giant Shell is running the rule over the potential sale of north Sea assets – but it is too early since its mega-merger with rival BG Group to have decided on a sale process.

But Paul Goodfellow, Shell’s upstream vice-president for the UK and Ireland, said the company may be looking at “innovative deals” like the sale of its Anasuria field.

Last year, Shell and its joint venture partner ExxonMobil struck a deal to sell its Anasuria cluster in the Central North Sea to a duo of Malaysia-based oil companies, Hibiscus Petroleum and Ping Petroleum, for close to £70million.

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John Donovan, Shell’s nightmare: MY EPIC FEUD WITH THE UNSCRUPULOUS OIL GIANT ROYAL DUTCH SHELL

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New ebook available globally, including: Amazon.com; Amazon.co.uk; Amazon.fr; Amazon.de; Amazon.nl; Amazon.com.au; Amazon.ca; Amazon.es; Amazon.it; Amazon.in

About: John Donovan, Shell’s nightmare

His ebook tells the truly extraordinary story of a series of battles in an epic feud between him and the oil giant Royal Dutch Shell. It all stemmed from the repeated theft of intellectual property by Shell.

Donovan was chairman of a sales promotion agency, Don Marketing, that devised spectacularly successful forecourt promotions for Shell on an international basis. Many involved budgets of several million dollars. A mutually beneficial relationship lasted for over a decade.

This was followed by two decades of acrimony involving six High Court actions, a County Court case and proceedings via the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO).

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Why Now May Be The Time To Sell Royal Dutch Shell Plc

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By Royston Wild : The Motley Fool – Thursday, 14 April, 2016

Despite my repeated warnings of impending doom, share prices of many of the Footie’s commodity and retail giants have been carried higher again against a backcloth of giddy investor appetite.

Diversified commodities play Anglo American (LSE: AAL) has seen its share price explode 160% during the past three months, while oil giant Shell (LSE: RDSB) has enjoyed a 31% rise. Grocery house Tesco (LSE: TSCO) has seen its share value advance by a more modest 7% during the period.

But a recovery from January’s multi-year lows does not suggest that these stocks are on the cusp of a stunning turnaround. As legendary economist John Maynard Keynes’ famously pronounced: “the market can stay irrational longer than you can stay solvent.”

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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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Exxon Mobil Corporation, Chevron Corporation: Oil Slump Persists, Compensation Packages Take a Nosedive

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By Micheal Kaufman on Apr 14, 2016

The oil slump has persisted for over 18 months now and it’s not surprising that several small and mid-sized companies have yielded to bankruptcy and debt pressures. Previously, the Street analysts were optimistic about the future outlook and the profitability of the oil giants; however, those expectations were reversed when the market situation took a turn for the worse in January.

The oil majors undertook several measures to tackle the slump. For starters, they lowered their capital and operating expenditures, went forth with mergers and acquisitions and debt and equity financing. They have taken the decision to reduce top executives’ pay amid one of the worst commodity downturns in the industry.

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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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BP shareholders reject chief Bob Dudley’s £14m pay deal

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14 April 2016

BP shareholders have rejected a pay package of almost £14m for chief executive Bob Dudley at the oil company’s annual general meeting.

Just over 59% of investors rejected Mr Dudley’s 20% increase, one of the largest rejections to date of a corporate pay deal in the UK.

The vote is non-binding on BP, but earlier, chairman Carl-Henric Svanberg promised to review future pay terms.

Mr Dudley received the rise despite BP’s falling profits and job cuts.

The final voting figures will be released later, with some major investors abstaining.

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Carbon capture: Collaboration needed says Shell head

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By John McManus: BBC News: 14 April 2016

The head of energy giant Shell’s UK and Ireland operations has said the UK government should have continued to support a scheme to develop carbon capture technology.

The technology – to store carbon emissions from fossil fuels underground – was being developed at Peterhead power station with the help of Shell.

Chancellor George Osborne cancelled the competition in his Autumn Statement.

Shell’s Paul Goodfellow said the technology needed more development.

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Shell’s UK boss says North Sea oil is prize worth fighting for

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Written by Phil Allan – 14/04/2016

The head of Shell’s UK upstream operation said the North Sea oil industry is a “prize worth fighting for” in the years to come, but said more still needs to be done to ensure the long-term future of the sector.

Paul Goodfellow said many positive steps have been taken but industry, the Oil and Gas Authority and Westminster and Holyrood governments needs to continue to work together to transform the basin into highly competitive province.

Goodfellow said: “There’s too much at stake not to make this work.”

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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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NWCAA alleges multiple failures by Shell Puget Sound Refinery in February 2015 chemical release

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“This incident sickened many people in the community, and people felt unsafe in their homes and at work,” said Mark Asmundson, Executive Director of the Northwest Clean Air Agency.

After a yearlong investigation, the Northwest Clean Air Agency is alleging Shell failed to follow shutdown and decontamination procedures while cleaning the refinery’s east flare system.

Shell’s actions led to a surge of wet, chemical-laden gases moving through the flare line and extinguishing the flare flame, allowing the release of unburned chemicals to the atmosphere. The purpose of the flare flame is to combust chemicals into less odorous and toxic forms. As a condition of its permit, Shell is required to maintain the flame if chemicals might be vented to the flare. The chemicals released included hydrogen sulfide, dimethyl sulfide, mercaptans and benzene.

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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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Air agency: Shell refinery emissions sickened many

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By KIMBERLY CAUVEL: 13 April 2016

ANACORTES — Harmful emissions from the Shell Puget Sound Refinery in February 2015 could have been avoided had the refinery followed protocols, the Northwest Clean Air Agency announced Tuesday.

A yearlong investigation suggests Shell failed to follow shutdown and decontamination procedures while cleaning the refinery’s east flare system, according to a news release from the regional air agency.

The refinery allegedly took shortcuts in shutting down and decontaminating its east flare system, leading to the release of chemicals on Feb. 20, 2015, that affected hundreds in La Conner and in the Swinomish Indian Tribal Community.

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Iran launches talks with Shell

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Seyed Mohsen Ghamsari, Executive Director for International Affairs at National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) made the remarks saying “despite the initiation of negotiations, no final agreement has been reached yet.”

In response to a question about the amount of oil sales to Royal Dutch Shell Oil Industry Company in case of sealing a deal, the official estimated that grounds will be provided for selling oil in accordance with pre-sanctions period which amounted to 100 thousand barrels per day.

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What Would an Exit from Bonga South West/Aparo Mean for Shell?

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Screen Shot 2016-04-13 at 08.15.09by Andreas Exarheas: Rigzone Staff: Tuesday, April 12, 2016

In February 2016, Royal Dutch Shell plc announced in its fourth quarter 2015 financial statement that it was postponing the final investment decision (FID) on the Bonga South West/Aparo (BSWA) deep water project offshore Nigeria, in an effort to curtail spending amid the current low oil price environment. Shell’s decision to postpone the FID on BSWA comes after Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company (SNEPCo) announced last year that it was committed to the project. In February 2015, the company’s managing director Tony Attah denied reports that the energy firm had stopped the development due to the slump in oil price and confirmed that it was progressing the tender for engineering, procurement and construction contracts related to BSWA.

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Bearish Options Activity on Royal Dutch Shell Plc After Worse Fundamentals

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By Linda Rogers April 12, 2016

In today’s session Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSA) recorded an unusually high (474) contracts volume of put trades. Someone, most probably a professional was a very active buyer of the July, 2016 put, expecting serious RDSA decrease. With 474 contracts traded and 11054 open interest for the Jul, 16 contract, it seems this is a quite bearish bet. The option with symbol: RDSA160715P00047500 closed last at: $2.15 or 15.7% down. The stock is down 0.40% or GBX 7 after the news, hitting GBX 1725 per share. About 1.84 million shares traded hands. Royal Dutch Shell Plc (LON:RDSA) has risen 7.31% since September 10, 2015 and is uptrending. It has outperformed by 2.65% the S&P500.

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