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AFX News Limited: Shell to appeal Nigeria damages ruling

06.11.07, 10:29 AM ET
LAGOS (Thomson Financial) – Royal Dutch Shell said today it has appealed a court ruling ordering it to pay six billion naira (147 mln usd) in damages to three local communities in Nigeria.

The high court in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, last month ordered the Anglo-Dutch oil company to pay the damages for breaching a lease agreement on land on which it has staff residential quarters.

The communities accused Shell of taking full ownership of 153 acres of land in the south of the country for which it held a 99-year lease.

‘We have filed an appeal for a stay of execution of the judgement. Shell did not breach any terms of the leasing agreement,’ a Shell spokesman in Lagos, Precious Okolobo, told AFP. No date has been fixed for the hearing, he added.

Shell is Nigeria’s largest oil operator, accounting for around half of the country’s daily output of 2.6 mln barrels. The company is losing nearly 500,000 barrels a day to unrest in the Niger delta.

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