Shell PLC has denied speculations that it was leaving Nigeria after selling its onshore business in the Niger Delta.
The PUNCH reports that Shell on Tuesday announced that it had “reached an agreement to sell its oil business in the Niger Delta, the Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited” to Renaissance Africa Energy.
The announcement has since generated a series of reactions on various social media platforms, as many opined that Shell was exiting Nigeria.
Contacted on Wednesday, Shell Nigeria media team explained to The PUNCH that the divestment of SPDC aligned with its previously announced intent to “exit onshore oil production in the Niger Delta and to focus future investment in Nigeria on our Deepwater and Integrated Gas positions.”
Contrary to insinuations, Shell said it intended “to remain a long-term partner of Nigeria, supporting the country’s growing energy needs and export ambitions in areas that are aligned with our strategy”.
Shell disclosed that it had three other main businesses in Nigeria that were outside the scope of the said SPDC transaction.
They are Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company Limited, which produces oil and gas in the deepwater Gulf of Guinea; Shell Nigeria Gas Limited, which provides gas to domestic industrial and commercial customers and Daystar Power Group, which provides integrated solar power to commercial and industrial businesses across West Africa.
In addition, Shell disclosed that it “holds a 25.6 per cent interest in NLNG, which produces and exports LNG to global markets,” stressing that “Shell’s interest in NLNG is also outside the scope of this transaction”.
On the fate of the current employees of Shell in Nigeria, the company said: “We do not expect a loss of employment. SPDC’s staff will continue to be employed by the company as it transitions to new ownership.”