Shell to invest US$4 billion in Nigerian improvements

Peter_Voser_ShellShell boss Peter Voser told investors the company would spend heavily on improving its Nigerian operations. (Image source: Shell)Royal Dutch Shell chief executive officer Peter Voser has said that the Anglo-Dutch oil giant would invest a further US$4 billion in improving efficiencies at its onshore Nigeria operations

Voser told investors that the company would look to boost production and reduce the amount of gas burned off into the atmosphere at its facilities within the West African country.

Shell’s oil production in Nigeria was responsible for about 10 per cent of the company’s total global output in 2011.

“Shell is assessing new projects for onshore Nigeria, which will add new production and reduce flaring,” said Voser.

“These projects could cost some $4 billion.”

Shell’s Nigeria affiliate, Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC), flared close to 20 per cent less gas last year than in 2010, Voser noted.

A sharply reduced number of militant attacks in the Niger Delta region helped SPDC’s production to increase by more than 40 per cent to 800,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day in 2011 compared with 460,000 in 2009.

Voser said that the company had to remain vigilant at its Nigerian operations as large-scale oil theft and illegal refining continue to cause problems.

“Oil theft was so prevalent we could not ensure the safety of our operation and shut in 25,000 barrels a day of production during part of 2011,” he remarked.

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