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The Philippine Star: Shell to start comm’l operation of CNG station

By DONNABELLE L. GATDULA

The Royal Dutch Shell Group will push through with the commercial operation of compressed natural gas (CNG) mother-daughter station in Laguna within this month,  Energy Secretary Angelo Reyes said.

He said no less than the Shell group’s chief executive Jeroen van der Veer made the commitment on the CNG project.

“I have talked with Shell country chairman Edgar Chua and he said we will have the daughter station in Biñan, Laguna by the end of this month.  The CEO of the Royal Shell group reiterated the same commitment,” Reyes said.

But Reyes admitted that the results of a study that would determine if Shell will pursue the upgrade of its refinery in Batangas are yet to be completed. “They are still evaluating and studying it,” the energy chief said.

Using Argentinian technology, Shell will initially sell CNG to 200 buses. Most of these buses were from China, India and the United Kingdom.

Under an agreement with the government, the price of CNG would be maintained 30 percent cheaper than the prevailing diesel prices within a seven-year period.

Shell has, so far, invested more than $7 million to construct the CNG station. There was a slight delay in the construction of the first-of-its-kind refilling station as Shell wants to ensure that it complies with all the necessary safety requirements.

Van der Veer who recently concluded his three-day visit to the Philippines for the first time, said his trip is an affirmation that the Philippines forms part of Shell’s long term strategic interests and is therefore committed to growing its businesses here.

“The Philippines is an important country for Shell, given that substantial investments have been made in upstream, downstream and most recently, shared services,” he said.

Among the highlights of his visit was a courtesy call to President Arroyo whenVan der Veer expressed optimism in the Philippine economy.

 “Shell wants to be a partner in the Philippines ’ development and is always looking for investment opportunities in the country,” Van der Veer said.

Other highlights include visits to various Shell sites – the Tabangao refinery in Batangas, Pandacan depot in Manila , Magallanes retail station and Shared Service Centre – Manila at RCBC Tower .

Van der Veer was appointed chairman of the Committee of Managing Directors of the Royal Dutch/Shell Group in March 2004 and Royal Dutch/Shell Group chief executive in October 2004. He joined the Royal Dutch/Shell Group in 1971 and has held a number of senior management positions around the world.

http://www.abs-cbnnews.com/storypage.aspx?StoryId=93566

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