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Bloomberg: Shell Says Fire at Pipe to Nigeria’s Bonny Terminal (Update1)

By Alexander Kwiatkowski and Dulue Mbachu

April 1 (Bloomberg) — Royal Dutch Shell Plc, Europe’s biggest oil company, said two pipelines were on fire in Nigeria’s Port Harcourt area, including one which transports crude to the Bonny export terminal.

A fire was discovered on Shell’s Trans-Niger pipeline on March 30 and is still burning, Shell spokesman Rainer Winzenried said in a telephone interview from The Hague today. The pipeline transports oil from the Port Harcourt area to the terminal.

There was no immediate impact on oil exports from the Bonny terminal, which receives supplies from some of Shell’s onshore fields in the eastern Niger Delta, said Shell Nigeria spokesman Precious Okolobo. Shell’s firefighting unit will attempt to extinguish the fire today, he said.

“It’s too early to tell if it will affect exports,” he said. “We don’t know the cause for now, but it’s close to where we had two pipeline fires last year that was caused by sabotage.”

The Trans-Niger pipeline is run by Shell Petroleum Development Co., a joint venture owned 30 percent by Shell and 55 percent by state-owned Nigerian National Petroleum Corp. Total SA 10 owns percent and Eni SpA 5 percent.

A second fire broke out on a pipeline belonging to Nigerian National Petroleum Corp. which transports oil from the Bonny terminal to a refinery in Port Harcourt, Okolobo said.

Shell spotted the fires by helicopter on March 30.

To contact the reporter on this story: Alexander Kwiatkowski in London at [email protected] Dulue Mbachu in Lagos via Johannesburg at [email protected].

Last Updated: April 1, 2008 03:23 EDT

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