LONDON Aug 4 Royal Dutch Shell's (RDSa.L)
operations in Nigeria have come under the spotlight after the
company accepted villagers had a right to sue its Nigerian
venture in a British court over oil spills in the Niger Delta.
A United Nations report on Thursday has also estimated that
Ogoniland in the oil-rich Niger Delta could need the world's
largest ever oil clean-up.
The following are some of the highlights of Shell's history
1936 - The Royal Dutch Shell Group establishes a Nigerian
venture with the precursor company of BP Plc .
1958 - The first shipment of oil from Nigeria
April 1973 - Nigerian government takes a stake in the
venture. Over the coming years, the government increases its
stake and BP exits.
1979 - Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria (SPDC)
established, incorporating assets of the older Shell-BP
consortium. Over time, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation
would come to own 55 percent, Shell owned 30 percent, France's
Total owned 10 percent and Italy's Eni owned
5 percent. Shell remains the lead partner operationally.
April 1993 - Shell forms Shell Nigeria Exploration and
Production Company Limited (SNEPCo) which signs Production
Sharing Contracts to develop offshore oil and gas interests.
Over time, Shell's focus would shift to offshore exploration
where it enjoyed better margins and fewer threats of attack by
October 2003 - SPDC pumps more than 1 million barrels of oil
2006 - Militant group MEND (Movement for the Emancipation of
the Niger Delta) emerges and begins to attack Shell facilities.
SPDC pump stations and platforms in Niger delta are especially
at risk and production falls.
January 2010 - SPDC sells some onshore fields and says it is
no longer looking to Nigeria for growth.
(Reporting by Tom Bergin. Editing by Jane Merriman)