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The Scotsman: Shell yet to assess Nigerian oilfield

Shell yet to assess Nigerian oilfield

LONDON (Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell said on Wednesday it has yet to carry out an assessment of an offshore oil field in Nigeria, a step required before it restarts output shut since February by rebel attacks.

On Monday, Shell said that it hoped the assessment of the EA field in Nigeria, which pumps 115,000 barrels a day, could take place as early as this week.

“The pre-resumption assessment indeed has not taken place yet,” Shell spokeswoman Caroline Wittgen said. She said production would resume “as soon as possible and when it's safe to do so.”

Oil prices have risen towards $70 a barrel in the U.S., near the record high hit last year, partly because attacks on Nigeria's oil industry have shut down almost a quarter of output from the country, the world's eighth-largest oil exporter.

Militants last week warned Shell against any return, threatening to execute anyone found on Shell's previously attacked platforms in the Niger Delta.

Shell has also closed 340,000 of output from Nigeria's onshore Forcados fields.

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Last updated: 12-Apr-06 17:03 BST

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