BY David Oputah
Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited (SPDC) has completed the sale of its 30 percent interest in Oil Mining Lease (OML) 18 and related facilities in the Eastern Niger Delta to Eroton Exploration & Production Company Limited.
This was disclosed in a statement released by Precious Okolobo, media relations manager, SPDC.
The deal is worth $737 million (N146.7bn) and was in line with the federal government’s aim of developing Nigerian companies in the country’s upstream oil and gas business.
“OML18 covers an area of 1,035 square kilometres and includes the Alakiri, Cawthorne Channel, Krakama, and Buguma Creek fields and related facilities.
“The divested infrastructure includes flow stations together with associated gas infrastructure plus oil and gas pipelines within the OML. The divested fields produced on average around 14,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (100%) during 2014,” the statement read.
Eroton also acquired 10 per cent from Total E&P Nigeria Limited and 5 per cent from Nigerian Agip Oil Company Limited, giving it a total 45 per cent holding stake in OML 18, while the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) retains its 55 per cent.
Shell, which has been in Nigeria for more than 50 years, says it remains committed to keeping a long-term presence, both onshore and offshore, in the country, asserting that the sale is part of the strategic review of its onshore portfolio.
Shell announced last October that it had signed sales agreements for all five Nigerian oil assets it put up for sale following a 2013 review of its business in Nigeria and completed the sale of OML 24 in November.
All approvals have been received from the relevant authorities.