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Business News

Respite for Nigeria as Exxon Mobil and Shell lose $1.8 billion arbitration award  

Exxon Mobil Corporation and Royal Dutch Shell Plc have lost bids to revive a $1.8 billion arbitration award against Nigeria. 

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No foreign exchange for food and fertilizer importers - Buhari, Gas project, Buharinomics, Buhari, metric, FG okays N100 billion for the completion of Kano Free Trade Zone , Nigeria saved N670 billion from Petrol Importation in half year 2019  , The Chicago Boys of Nigeria, Buhari signs Production Sharing Contract (PSC) Amendment Bill into law , Nigeria generates N876.09 billion in 9-month, as revenue shortfall poses threat 

Exxon Mobil Corporation and Royal Dutch Shell Plc have both lost their bids to revive a $1.8 billion arbitration award against Nigeria 

According to Reuters, a U.S District Judge, William Pauley, rejected Exxon Mobil and Shell’s move to revive the dispute, citing public policy and due process considerations in deciding not to enforce the October 2011 award against Nigerian National Petroleum Corp (NNPC), which was subsequently set aside by courts in Nigeria. 

The details: Essentially, the case stemmed from a dispute over a 1993 contract to extract oil near Nigeria’s coastline. Also, Exxon Mobil and Shell claimed that the award had grown to $2.67 billion (interest inclusive) since November 2018.  

[READ MORE: NNPC clears $833.57 million debt owed to Exxon Mobile’s subsidiary]

According to the judgement delivered by Pauley in a 50-page document, though the court has the inherent authority to deliver judgement in appropriate fashion, the case filed by Exxon and Shell lacked merit 

Pauley wrote, “While this court may have inherent authority to fashion appropriate relief in certain circumstances, exercising that authority to create a $1.8 billion judgment is a bridge too far.

“Exxon and Shell executed a contract in Nigeria with another Nigerian corporation containing an arbitration clause requiring any arbitration to be held in Nigeria under Nigerian law, and it then sought to confirm the award in Nigeria.” 

Details in the court papers show that the 1993 contract anticipated that Exxon and Shell affiliates would invest billions of dollars to extract oil from the Erha field, about 60 miles (97 km) off Nigeria’s coast, and share profits with NNPC. 

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Meanwhile, the affiliates, Esso Exploration and Production Nigeria Ltd and Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Co Ltd, accused NNPC of unilaterally “lifting” more oil than was contractually allowed, at the request of the Nigerian Government, depriving them of billions of dollars of oil. 

Exxon Mobil kicks: Following the judgement, Exxon spokesman Todd Spitler said the Irving, Texas-based company disagreed with the decision and was evaluating its next steps. On the other hand, Shell and its lawyers did not respond immediately to requests for comment. 

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Meanwhile, NNPC’s legal representative, Cecilia Moss, stated that NNPC was very pleased with the decision, and was always confident that there was no basis for a U.S. court to confirm the award 

[READ ALSO: ExxonMobil finds a foe in Femi Falana following the firm’s N684 billion debt mess]

In the meantime, this constitutes a relief for Nigeria as the country is still battling the over $9 billion (N3.5 trillion) judgment involving the country and a British Firm – Process and Industrial Developments Ltd (P&ID). 

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Samuel is an Analyst with over 5 years experience. Connect with him via his twitter handle

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Business News

BUA Group, French company announce progress in 200,000 bpd refinery project

This is coming about 6 months after both firms signed an agreement for the supply of process technologies and the design of the facility.

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The BUA Group and Axens, a French-based petroleum technology company, have both signed a progress acknowledgement statement for the proposed BUA multi-billion-dollar integrated 200,000 barrels per day refinery in Akwa Ibom State.

This is coming about 6 months after both firms signed an agreement for the supply of process technologies and the design of the facility.

BUA, while making the disclosure in a statement on Wednesday, April 14, 2021, said that the French President, Emmanuel Macron, commended its Chairman, Abdul Samad Rabiu, for his commitment to developing lasting relationships between French and Nigerian businesses.

The statement said that this came as the French Minister for Foreign Trade and Economic Attractiveness, Franck Riester, paid a visit to the BUA Group Headquarters in Lagos where he handed over a personal invitation from Macron to Rabiu to attend the Choose France Summit in June in Paris representing business leaders from Nigeria and Africa.

The French minister also witnessed the signing of a progress acknowledgement statement between BUA Group and Axens of France for the proposed refinery project, according to the statement.

The statement also said that during the visit, it was announced that the BUA chairman had been appointed Chairman of the France Nigeria Investment Club.

While thanking the minister and Macron for their unwavering support in bringing BUA and French businesses together, Rabiu said BUA had so far initiated partnerships and had developed personal relationships with a few French businesses, including Axens.

He expressed confidence in the quality of expertise and technical know-how of the French companies BUA had partnered with.

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Rabiu pointed out that the BUA refinery would reduce the huge cost of transporting Nigerian crude offshore, refining it and bringing it back into the country when fully operational.

He said that the choice of Akwa Ibom for the refinery was due to the huge availability of raw materials and its proximity to export petroleum products to regional countries.

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The President of Axens, Jean Sentenac, in his statement, said he was pleased that the project was advancing on schedule and expressed delight for the very good cooperation between all the involved parties, reiterating the commitment of Axens in delivering the BUA Refinery Project on time and with the highest standards.

Bottom line

The completion and take-off of the refinery owned by the BUA Group would come as a huge boost for the Federal Government’s effort to stop the importation of refined petroleum products, ensuring that the country becomes a net exporter of these products.

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This will also help to conserve the scarce foreign exchange as the completion and take-off of the Dangote refinery and other similar refinery projects will help ensure self-sufficiency in the country.

The BUA Group, just a few days ago, was listed as one of the companies with an active refinery license from the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR).

 

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Coronavirus

Covid-19: Nigeria records over 1 million vaccinations

The NPHCDA has stated that it has vaccinated 1,043,737 persons, which is 51.9% of the targeted total proportion.

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Covid-19: First world nations oppose waiving intellectual rights for vaccine development

The National Primary Health Care Development Agency has disclosed that Nigeria, as of April 14th, 2021, had vaccinated 1,043,737 persons, which is 51.9% of the targeted total proportion.

The NPHCDA revealed this in a statement on Wednesday evening.

Kwara State leads in the vaccination percentage of target reached, at 110% with 30,708 vaccinations.

Meanwhile, Lagos State has conducted the most vaccinations so far at 192,061 representing 75.7% of its percentage target reached so far.

The Federal Capital has vaccinated 40.1% of its target so far at 44,098 and Kogi State has conducted the least number of vaccinations at 5,568.

In case you missed it

Nairametrics reported earlier that the Nigerian government aimed to get 70 million Johnson and Johnson single-shot COVID-19 vaccines after the African Union recently announced a deal with the drugmaker for 400 million vaccine doses.

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