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Wikipedia: Controversies surrounding Shell: IRAN

Shell courted controversy in January 2007 when they announced that they had signed a deal to help Iran develop a major gas field in defiance of pressure from the United States. [22]

Shell has been active in Iran for many years. Shell Iran has an office in Tehran [23] from which various downstream businesses are managed and which is also the centre for new exploration and production and other projects. In 1999 Shell signed an agreement with the National Iranian Oil Company to redevelop the Soroosh and Nowrooz offshore oil fields and Shell executives made it clear at the time of the signing how much the company valued its relationship with Iran [24]. Drilling commenced in 2001. Whilst American oil companies were prohibited by sanctions from working in Iran Shell, along with some other European companies (e.g. Repsol), continued to operate and pursue new opportunities in the country. This was in contrast with BP who decided not to be involved at a time when the Iranian regime was criticised for its anti-western stance, its suspected nuclear weapons programme, its support for the insurgencies in Palestine and Iraq and its institutionalised anti-Israeli and holocaust denial rhetoric.

On 27 July 2007, The Daily Telegraph published an article under the headline “Shell’s Iran venture to continue”. It reported that “Royal Dutch Shell’s chief executive Jeroen van der Veer said there were no plans to halt preparatory work on possible investments in Iran, despite renewed pressure about the risks of operating in a country where America has imposed economic sanctions.” The article said that Shell had signed an initial “$10bn (£4.9bn) agreement with the Iranian government to develop two phases of the South Pars gas field”. It also revealed that a number of U.S. pension funds had warned Shell about potential consequences of business links with Teheran when worsening US-Iran relations could “impact companies doing business there.”

On 22 September 2007, The Times newspaper reported “Washington has repeatedly pressed European banks and energy companies to cease investing in a state it lists as a state sponsor of terrorism. Firms that could be hard hit include the Anglo-Dutch oil giant, Shell, which is considering a multi-billion pound project in Iran to produce natural gas.”

On 20 September 2007 The Houston Chronicle reported “Florida to drop $1.3 billion in Iran, Sudan investments”. It said that Florida’s largest investment, $303 million, “is with Royal Dutch Shell PLC, headquartered in London, which operates in Iran but not Sudan.” A Shell spokesperson was reported as saying that Shell was “monitoring Florida’s law and similar proposals in other states and Congress to assess their potential affect on the company’s operations.”

The Associated Press reported on 18 September 2007, that Royal Dutch Shell plc had paid Covington & Burling LLP $100,000 to lobby Congress and the U.S. State Department “to oppose economic sanctions against Shell…”

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Comment by John Donovan: 23 Sept 2007

As a Shell shareholder I find it absolutely appalling that Royal Dutch Shell is still pressing on with its plans in Iran despite: –

*Sanctions threats against Shell by the American government…

*Iran’s avowed intent to become a nuclear power…

*Iranian threats to eliminate Israel…

*Iranian capture, exploitation and release for propaganda purposes of British sailors/hostages…

*Iranian supply of roadside bombs to blow up American and British soldiers in Iraq…

Shell is so desperate to secure hydrocarbon reserves following the 2004 securities fraud, when nearly a third of Shell’s claimed reserves turned out to be illusionary, that it is one of the few oil giants still active in Iran. 

Such involvement is morally indefensible.

Shame on Shell

Posted by John Donovan, co-owner of the website: and its sister websites,,,,, and are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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