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Posts from ‘December, 2008’

Chemical Giant LyondellBasell Mulls Bankruptcy

He bought Basell, a Dutch joint-venture between German chemicals-maker BASF AG and Royal Dutch Shell PLC, for €4.4 billion, or $6.06 billion, in 2005, the largest leveraged-buyout deal in the chemical industry at that time.

Shell shuts Nigerian gas plant due to technical problems




By Jonathan Browning and Daniela Silberstein

Dec. 31 (Bloomberg – Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSA LN): Europe’s largest oil company’s Nigerian unit shut down its Utorogun gas plant due to technical problems, cutting gas supplies to major power plants, ThisDay reported, citing the head of the Nigerian Gas Company. The stock rose 40 pence, or 2.3 percent, to 1,811 pence.


Shell Australia refinery outage to last into 2009

SYDNEY, Dec 31 (Reuters) - A temporary shut down of Royal Dutch Shell Plc's (RDSa.L) Australia Clyde refinery will extend into 2009 due to ongoing maintenance work, a company spokesman said on Wednesday.

Shell Says Train Wagon From German Refinery Spills Oil Product

Dec. 30 (Bloomberg) -- Royal Dutch Shell Plc, Europe’s largest oil company, said a railway boiler wagon spilled a “bitumen-like” oil by-product after leaving the Heide refinery in the northern German town of Hemmingstedt.

Oil Set for Rebound as Record Drop Spurs OPEC Cuts

Dec. 30 (Bloomberg) -- Oil futures may rebound from their worst year to average $60 a barrel next year as OPEC makes record production cuts to counter the deepest economic slump since World War II.

Loonie’s Worst Year May Extend Into 2009 Amid Oil’s Collapse

Royal Dutch Shell Plc, based in The Hague, and StatoilHydro ASA, Norway’s biggest oil producer, are among companies that deferred or canceled at least 14 projects this year in Alberta’s oil sands. Oil collapsed more than $100 since July to a low of $32.40 a barrel, less than half the price needed to make oil- sands projects economically viable, according to estimates by the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers.

BP Resumes Full Production at Australian Oil Refinery

Dec. 30 (Bloomberg) -- BP Plc, one of four oil refiners in Australia, resumed full production at a plant in Western Australia, the largest in the country, after scheduled maintenance work that lasted two months.

India’s ONGC Fights to Keep Up

Around the same time, Angola rejected plans by Royal Dutch Shell PLC to sell its half of a project to ONGC, instead ordering Shell to sell to Chinese interests.

Shell eyes 40 more outlets

KUALA LUMPUR: Shell Malaysia plans to open 40 more petrol stations next year despite the challenging economic environment.

Golar May Pip Shell for Gladstone LNG, The Australian Reports

Dec. 29 (Bloomberg) -- Norway's Golar LNG Ltd. may win a contract to buy liquefied natural gas from a gas venture in Australia, crowding out Royal Dutch Shell SA, The Australian said, citing Golar LNG's Chief Executive Officer Gary Smith.

‘No pause button’ on Corrib gas project, Shell says

SHELL EP Ireland has said there is "no pause button" on the Corrib gas project, and no overall delay to the current schedule. The company was responding yesterday to an industry media report that the project may have been put on hold.

Gazprom, Once Mighty, Is Reeling

Investors are now fleeing Gazprom stock...

Corrib forum chairman opens door to campaigners

Separately, a High Court action taken by four residents seeking declarations that Shell has no interest in lands acquired under compulsory acquisition orders in 2002 is continuing.

Million dollar question: how to get oil from shale

The in situ method being used in Shell Oil’s experimental tract involves drilling a well through the oil shale layer (about 2,000 feet) and lowering heated rods that will eventually heat the shale to 650 degrees Farenheit to release the oil.

Oil giants are itching to invade Iraq

In October the Baghdad government kicked off a round of bidding to allow international oil companies to exploit eight of the country’s largest oil and gasfields. BP, Royal Dutch Shell, Exxon Mobil and Gazprom are among the 35 companies that have put concerns about security to one side and thrown their hats in the ring.

Russia look to control world’s gas prices

The Russian national anthem blared over the loudspeakers as dozens of oilmen and officials braved the freezing cold to watch the tanker come in, celebrating the launch of year-round oil production from Sakhalin-2, the largest oil and gas project in the world.

Ensuring our energy futures – don’t leave it to the oil companies!

The eyes of the world are not focused too closely on Shell and the other western oil multinationals at the moment – but they should be. Whilst the dysfunctionality, incompetence, voracity and self-interest of the financial sector, and the utter failure of finance associated regularity systems, is top of the mind the oil sector is escaping much attention – except amongst the pressure groups and NGOs who specialise in this area. But in reality, and if we take a long term view, the actions of multinational oil companies ought to be just as closely monitored and controlled as those of the banks and finance houses whose dysfunctional management is the major cause of our current global malaise.For any economy to function successfully there need to be solid checks and balances on the free market sector. It was the almost total absence of such controls on the likes of Lehman Brothers and Madoff that allowed them to lie, cheat and defraud at will. Part of the reason was the global nature of these businesses. Lehman Brothers, for example, had offices in more than 30 countries and it was able to finesse its financing both to minimise tax liabilities and to frustrate regulators – whether the whole story will ever emerge remains to be seen. In the oil sector there is a directly comparable focus on optimising the income streams, minimising tax and creating smokescreens around some behaviours and activities. read more

Global energy investment hit by financial crisis

The growing financial crisis and plunging energy prices have forced companies to scale back spending and delay projects, with expensive ventures in the oilsands hardest hit.

Dutch Shell Pension Fund Scandal: Negligent Administration?

The shock waves have however been such that Clive Mather, Chairman of the trustees of the Shell Contributory Pension Fund, has felt it necessary to send a message of reassurance to Shell UK pensioners. Dutch Shell pensioners will no doubt find it informative to contrast their uncertain situation with that of their UK counterparts.

Shell to Buy Assets of U.S. Energy Marketer Enspire

Dec. 26 (Bloomberg) -- Royal Dutch Shell Plc, Europe’s largest oil company, agreed to buy the assets of Enspire Energy LLC, an energy marketer based in Virginia.

Crude Oil Rises First Time in 3 Days After U.A.E. Cuts Output

“Crude hasn’t bottomed out as yet because we are getting so much bad economic news,” said Tony Regan, a Singapore-based independent energy consultant, who formerly worked for Royal Dutch Shell Plc and Nexant Inc.

Fill ‘er up with coal, thanks

Royal Dutch Shell and Anglo-American recently shelved a $5 billion project to convert coal to diesel in the Latrobe Valley until further research was carried out.

Oil prices near $35 on more dour economic news

HOUSTON (AP) -- Crude prices tumbled Wednesday following a string of economic reports that painted an ugly picture of the nation's economy, suggesting that demand for energy will continue to erode. Light, sweet crude for February delivery fell $3.63 to settle at $35.35 in a shortened day of trading. Prices fell as low as $35.13 just before the market closed for the holiday.

Palin disappointed by Shell’s drilling decision

ANCHORAGE - Gov. Sarah Palin expressed her disappointment Dec. 18 in Shell Oil Company's decision to cancel drilling activities in the Outer Continental Shelf of Alaska's Beaufort Sea for 2009.


Uralsib, a Moscow investment bank, suggests Gopec's formation will leave control of gas development, especially LNG, in the hands of members' national energy companies. The likes of ExxonMobil, BP and Shell may be relegated to minority stakes.

FSA fines hit record with more to come

Fines so far have totalled £22.6m – the second highest amount yet. It would be a record were it not for the distorting effect on the 2004 £24.8m record of the £17m fine against Shell.

Fatality at Shell Deer Park Refinery

The falling accident took place at approximately 11 a.m. Thursday at a Shell Oil refinery at the 5700 block of State Highway 225.

Shell Oil Cancels Alaskan Drilling Project, 800 Jobs At Stake

Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin said she was disappointed in Shell's decision because of its impact on the job market.

LNG armada could revolutionize industry: Royal Dutch Shell is leading the charge…

Anglo-Dutch oil major Royal Dutch Shell PLC is leading the charge, but U. S. rivals ExxonMobil and Chevron and Australia's Woodside are also eyeing floating LNG, or FLNG.

Contract Extension for Shell Martinez Refinery

Shell Oil Products US has awarded WorleyParsons an extension of the Shell Martinez Master Services Agreement (Contract) until December 31, 2010.

Shell poised for Libra-1 return

Nexus Energy expects the drilling rig for the Shell-operated Libra-1 well off Western Australia to be re-crewed later this week after operations were suspended due to Tropical Cyclone Billy.

Oil-Shale Waste ‘Non Hazardous,’ EPA Says

In November, the Department of the Interior opened the western U.S. to commercial oil shale development after the expiration of a congressional ban that had so far only allowed demonstration projects such as the one operated by Royal Dutch Shell.

The Two Most Profitable Oil Plays in the World

Two companies are dwarfing "big oil" in profit margins and reserves. They’re about to hand investors a double in the short run…

Royal Dutch Shell Pension Fund Meltdown

NETHERLANDS – The Dutch pension fund of Anglo-Dutch oil giant Shell has seen its funding ratio plummet 160% to 85% in less than a year.

Madoff fraud costs pension funds €44m so far

Samco, the asset management company of the Shell pension funds, said last week it had a total of $45m (€32.2m) through indirect investments on behalf of the Dutch Shell Pension Fund...

Investors ready for Iraq invasion as troops pull out

Royal Dutch Shell has signed a multi-billion dollar natural gas deal with the Iraqi government, which will see it capture flared gas released from oil extraction...

Companies blacklisted in US for allegedly backing Mugabe operate freely in UK

“Alongside the likes of Shell and BP, who have major networks of petrol retail outlets in Zimbabwe, Breco supplies petroleum products, purchased from the State Oil Company by law, to a mere five retail outlets

Arrow launches $460 mln takeover bid for Pure Energy

The cash component of the offer will be funded via a combination of Arrow's existing cash reserves and proceeds from the firm's recent 30 percent sale of its Australian upstream interests to Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L).

Shell – ‘risk-free’ North Sea still vital

SHELL'S UK chairman has pledged the oil major's continuing commitment to the North Sea despite his belief that more than half the area's natural reserves have been produced. James Smith told The Scotsman that the fact that there was still a "low risk" in operating in the North Sea compared with some regions of the world also remained a big plus for the major explorers.

Arrow Offers an 81% Premium for Pure Energy Resources

Dec. 22 (Bloomberg) -- Arrow Energy Ltd., Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s partner in coal-seam gas in northeast Australia, offered to buy Pure Energy Resources Ltd. for A$673 million ($460 million) in cash and shares, an 81 percent premium to its stock price.

Royal Dutch Shell Pension Fund Machinations

On 12 December news surfaced that the Dutch pension fund of Royal Dutch Shell is heavily in deficit, with a 40% plunge in value as a result of share market turmoil. A $45 million exposure to the "Madoff" fraud was revealed a few days later following speculation surrounding the stability of the fund.

Lower energy prices aren’t fueling economic returns

Royal Dutch Shell PLC, for example, has postponed a near-doubling of production in Canada's oil sands — an operation that some analysts say requires oil to be above $70 a barrel to be economically feasible.

Shell May Revisit Oil-Sand Projects as Procurement Costs Drop

Dec. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Royal Dutch Shell Plc said construction and engineering costs may fall in Canada, allowing Europe’s largest oil producer to revisit plans to expand oil- sand projects. “We expect that procurement costs will come down quite a lot,” Chief Executive Officer Jeroen van der Veer said today in an interview at an energy conference in London. “If the overheating goes out of the market, the break-even price that you can build an oil-sands project will come down again.”

Bernard Madoff ‘fraud’: The list of the casualties including Shell

The Dutch pension fund of Royal Dutch Shell said it has a $45m exposure to the alleged $50bn fraud by prominent Wall Street trader Bernard Madoff.

Oil’s Crash Stirs Unrest in Russia as Slump Hits Home

Public panic is one of the Kremlin's greatest fears.

Oil $36.22 a barrel on New York Mercantile Exchange, the lowest price since June 2004

Futures contracts for January delivery yielded under heavy selling pressure Thursday to finish down $3.84, or 9.6%, at $36.22 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, the lowest price since June 2004.

Samsung Bets on Shell Floating LNG as Orders Fall

Dec. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Samsung Heavy Industries Co. and Hyundai Heavy Industries Co. are betting that Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s plan for untried floating gas-export terminals will spur billions of dollars in orders as the shipping market collapses.

Shell asks for rehearing of Ninth Circuit court decision; delays 2009 Beaufort drilling

Shell said it will file a petition with the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals Dec. 18 to ask for a rehearing of the court’s decision to block Alaskan Beaufort Sea drilling.

Shell cancels 2009 Alaska off-shore drilling program

Alaska -- Shell Oil has canceled its exploratory drilling program for next year in Alaska's Beaufort Sea while it focuses on court challenges to its offshore plan.



Thursday December 18,2008

OIL giant Royal Dutch Shell has emerged as one of the latest victims of the $50?billion (£33?billion) fraud by Wall Street trader Bernard Madoff.

The company said its Dutch pension fund had a $45?million exposure to the fraud but that the impact would “not be material” even if it had to write off the full amount.

It joins a growing list of organisations globally that will lose money as a result of the fraud, with the total figure now above $24?billion.

Shell’s announcement came after the chairman of the U.S. watchdog, the Securities & Exchange Commission, admitted it had not followed up a string of tip-offs about Madoff’s activities. read more

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