Nigeria Unaware of Shell Oil Sale Plans

20 December 2009 (Last Updated December 20th, 2009 18:30)

Royal Dutch Shell has not informed the government of any plans to sell oil fields in Nigeria, as reported by several newspapers over the weekend, Minister of State for Petroleum Odein Ajumogobia said. The UK's Sunday Times reported that Shell planned to sell fields valued at up t

Royal Dutch Shell has not informed the government of any plans to sell oil fields in Nigeria, as reported by several newspapers over the weekend, Minister of State for Petroleum Odein Ajumogobia said.

The UK's Sunday Times reported that Shell planned to sell fields valued at up to $5bn to impose harsher terms on foreign operators and hand greater control to domestic oil firms.

"Shell has not informed the government of any such plans," Ajumogobia told Reuters, when asked about the reports.

Shell, the longest-standing foreign oil firm of Africa's biggest oil and gas producers, has declined to comment.

The Sunday Times said Chinese state-owned oil group Sinopec had requested information and that Nigeria's independent oil group Oando and London-listed Afren could also be interested in buying Shell assets.