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Reuters: Shell CEO sees Texas refinery decision by yearend

Wed Sep 12, 2007 5:19 PM BST
(In U.S. dollars)

CALGARY, Alberta, Sept 12 (Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSa.L: Quote, Profile , Research) will make a final decision on whether to go ahead with a $5 billion plan to double capacity at its oil refinery at Port Arthur, Texas, by yearend, chief executive Jeroen van der Veer said on Wednesday.

Shell and Saudi Refining Co., joint-venture partners in the Motiva Enterprises refinery, are considering a plan to expand capacity to 600,000 barrels a day from 285,000.

“If they build the addition it would be the largest refinery in the U.S.,” van der Veer told reporters in Calgary. “That decision will be before the end…of this year.”

The project is one of a number of refinery expansion projects planned globally to take advantage of strong oil-industry profits. However, van der Veer said such plans need to account for potential downturns.

“If you build a refinery or expand a refinery that will stand there for 30 years, 40 years, or more, you will have to go through bad times,” he said.

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