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Royal Dutch Shell Profit Nearly Doubles

By : July 28, 2011

LONDON — Royal Dutch Shell, the biggest oil company in Europe, said on Thursday that its profit almost doubled in the second quarter on higher oil prices and as new oil and gas projects came on stream.

Profit rose to $8.7 billion in the April-through June period, from $4.4 billion in the same period last year, Shell said in a statement. Production fell 2 percent after Shell sold some assets and because of delays in drilling permits in the Gulf of Mexico.

“We have made important progress with new production in 2011, and the ramp-up of our new projects should drive our financial performance in the coming quarters,” the Shell chief executive Peter Voser said in the statement.

Shell started two projects in the first half in Qatar and expanded its Canadian oil sands operation. The Qatargas 4 liquefied natural gas project is now at full capacity and the new Pearl gas to liquids operation started, Shell said.

The three projects are expected to contribute more than 400,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day in peak production, the company said.

Shell invested $8 billion in the first half and reiterated it aims to invest at least $100 billion in new energy supplies until 2014. Among its investments are liquefied natural gas projects in Australia and Indonesia. Shell also sold $4 billion of assets in the first half of this year to reduce its costs.

BP reported a profit of $5.6 billion in the second quarter on Tuesday after a loss in the same period last year, but said oil and gas production fell as it sold some assets and continued to be affected by the Gulf of Mexico rig explosion a year ago.

Oil and gas production at Shell dropped to 3 million barrels of oil equivalent per day, from 3.1 million barrels in the second quarter of last year. Shell sold its stake in a deep-water subsalt exploration block off Brazil’s coast earlier this month and completed the sale of a group of gas fields in South Texas to Occidental Petroleum for $1.8 billion in January. It also sold assets in Britain and Canada.

Exxon Mobil was expected to report earnings later on Thursday.


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