Shell in negotiations to offload its $2bn Nigerian assets to local producers

Shell in negotiations to offload its $2bn Nigerian assets to local producers

/ Financial News / Monday, 10 September 2018 08:17

Recently, oil giant, Shell, has been considering selling two of its Nigerian oil licenses worth together $2 billion to local oil producers after four years of failed attempts to offload its assets in the Niger Delta.

The Anglo-Dutch giant is discussing selling its oil mining licenses 11 and 17. It is also considering selling essential infrastructure assets, which include a natural gas-fired power plant, which will be managed by Transactional Corporation of Nigeria PLC (Transcorp).

Even though talks between Shell and the local buyers were at an advanced stage, however, they are running into hurdles due to lack of financing. No deal has been reached and the talks could still fall apart.

In addition, incidents such as local oppositions, militant activities, civil conflict, and allegations of environmental pollution, had caused controversies to the company. Nevertheless, exiting the two oil blocks may reduce Shell's exposure in Nigeria.

It is noteworthy that the oil mining license 17 falls within oil corporation NNPC/Shell joint venture and initially includes 15 oil and gas fields. However, only six of them are actively producing oil at the moment. As for oil mining license 11, it is one of the biggest blocks in southeast part of Niger Delta and has 33 oil and gas fields, eight of which were producing as of 2017.

After completion of the sale, Shell will be focusing on its deep water operations, given the fact that the frequency of theft and threat of attacks on infrastructure are quite low there.

For a brief historic review, Shell has been present in Nigeria since 1936 when Shell D'Arcy was founded, the group's first company in the nation. In 1938, an exploration license was granted to the company and in 1950, after discovering oil in the region, Shell became one of the biggest producers in West Africa

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