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Shell still assessing damage from Nigerian attacks

Reuters

Shell still assessing damage from Nigerian attacks

Tue Jul 29, 2008 3:42am EDT

LAGOS, July 29 (Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L: QuoteProfileResearch,Stock Buzz) said on Tuesday it was still assessing the impact of an attack by militants on its Nembe Creek crude oil trunk pipeline on Monday and was continuing to check its facilities for further damage.

The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) said it had blown up pipelines at Kula — through which the Nembe Creek trunkline passes — and at Rumuekpe, located around 50 km (30 miles) west of the main oil city of Port Harcourt.

“A helicopter overfly confirmed that parts of SPDC’s Nembe Creek trunk line were damaged in attacks,” Shell spokeswoman in Nigeria Caroline Wittgen said.

“We are working to ascertain the extent of damage and have shut in some production to limit the amount of crude that will spill into the environment,” she said.

Industry sources said about 130,000 barrels per day of crude oil flows through the pipeline to the Bonny export terminal.

The oil from the facility is particularly popular in the United States and Europe because it is easily refined into gasoline, diesel and other crude products.

Rumuekpe is not part of the Nembe Creek trunk line.

MEND’s campaign of violent sabotage against the oil industry in the Niger Delta has cut output in the world’s eighth biggest exporter by around a fifth since early 2006.

The latest attacks came just as traders expected Nigeria’s crude exports to rise to 2.02 million barrels per day in September, following pipeline repairs.

Traders said on Monday the preliminary September programmes showed an increase from estimated exports of 1.94 million bpd in August but warned that further attacks could disrupt supplies.

Shell operates onshore in Nigeria in a joint venture with state-run oil firm NNPC. (For full Reuters Africa coverage and to have your say on the top issues, visit: africa.reuters.com/ ) (Reporting by Nick Tattersall, editing by Anthony Barker)

 

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