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Royal Dutch Shell leader agrees with OPEC officials

UPI Energy Watch

Published: June 3, 2008 at 5:06 PM

Royal Dutch Shell leader agrees with OPEC officials.

Jeroen van der Veer, the top Royal Dutch Shell director, has echoed the views of many members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries that the world oil market is well supplied. 

“There are no physical shortages in the world. We don’t have ships waiting in the Middle East, no people queuing up for gasoline,” van der Veer told reporters in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. 

He alleged the high prices have a lot more to do with psychology than with supply or demand. Van der Veer also added that the focus needs to be on finding unconventional oil and gas and developing renewables.

Oil prices have continuously hit record highs since the beginning of the year. OPEC ministers blame the U.S. dollar value and geopolitical tensions for the price spike, Iran’s PRESS TV reported, while other leaders say additional supply is needed.

When asked about his opinion on governments that are trying to stockpile oil, van der Veer said it was nothing new. He said firms now, however, must be careful where they invest, regarding geopolitical tensions.

In May, Nigeria sought $850 million from Shell, which the country’s president said was owed to state oil firm NNPC as capital allowance from two offshore fields. NNPC and the government are also seeking $414.6 million they said were owed from gas sales and taxes for Shell’s Bonga fields.

Van der Veer said he is looking at security and project funding issues in Nigeria, which had taken a toll on Shell’s oil output and caused it to lose its position as the biggest producer in the West African country to ExxonMobil.

http://www.upi.com/International_Security/Energy/Analysis/2008/06/03/upi_energy_watch/3895/

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