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Shell share price: Canada boss leaves company

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Screen Shot 2015-10-28 at 08.03.29by Veselin ValchevTuesday, 17 Nov 2015, 11:18 GMT

Royal Dutch Shell Plc (LON:RDSA) announced yesterday that the boss of the firm’s Canada division, Lorraine Mitchelmore, is stepping down from the company at the end of 2015, following six years at the helm.

The move comes less than a month after the Anglo-Dutch oil major abandoned its 80,000 barrel per day Carmon Creek thermal oil sands project in Alberta, amid a reshuffle of the firm’s portfolio.

A spokesman for Shell Canada said Mitchelmore’s departure had nothing to do with the decision to shelve Carmon Creek.

“My choice to move on to new opportunities is largely driven by my desire to spend more time with my two young daughters,” Mitchelmore said.

Mitchelmore will be replaced by Michael Crothers, currently vice president for Shell’s unconventional oil and gas business in North America. Mitchelmore role as executive vice president of Shell’s global heavy oil business will be taken over by Zoe Yujnovich, who is currently a vice president in charge of oil sands joint ventures, Shell noted.

Shell’s decision to cancel the Carmon Creek project cost the company $2 billion, and was made in the context of rising uncertainties surrounding the Alberta oil market and carbon energy in general.

“There were just too many uncertainties causing a range of outcomes [for Carmon Creek] from the absolutely fantastic to the absolutely disastrous, and that is the sort of lack of resilience that we cannot live with, certainly not in today’s environment,” Shell chief executive van Beurden said this month. “The most sensible thing was to shelve it and to focus our cash elsewhere.”

Indeed, the cited risks were confirmed earlier this month, with US President Barack Obama rejecting the proposed Keystone XL, which would have eventually transported 0.8m barrels of crude per day from Alberta to US refineries.

Obama noted that the pipeline had taken on an “overinflated role” in the climate change debate, and said it “would not make a meaningful long-term contribution to our economy”.

Shell’s share price had edged 2.95 percent higher to 1,622.50p as of 11:08 GMT today, as the broader market enjoyed uplifted sentiment ahead of key US CPI data. The oil major’s stock is down nearly 25 percent this year.

As of 11:20 GMT, Tuesday, 17 November, Royal Dutch Shell Plc ‘A’ share price is 1,617.50p.

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