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Exxon has had its fair share of trouble in Nigeria, what with all the militant attacks, and now it is looking for another route to export the crude it pumps in the Niger Delta, to replace its main pipeline for moving Qua Iboe crude oil, which was damaged last month.
As is its policy, Exxon did not comment on the report, with a spokesman telling Reuters just that the repairs of the Qua Iboe are progressing.
Force majeure was declared last month when a routine maintenance check of its loading facility revealed a “system anomaly” as the company said at the time. It noted, however, that the anomaly was not the result of militant attacks.
The Niger Delta Avengers, however, the most active militant group in the Niger Delta, claimed responsibility for an attack on the pipeline. At the time, the NDA also told Exxon to “stop lying to the world,” and warned the company it will start targeting its employees instead of its infrastructure.
Exxon workers in Nigeria told AP in July that the damage to the 300,000-bpd export terminal was quite serious, and force majeure could be in place for as long as a month. One security official for Exxon confirmed the extent of the damage, which was in contrast with the official Exxon statement about a system anomaly and that the terminal was “operating and production activities continue.”
Exxon is by no means the only company that has been forced to shutter assets due to militant attacks. Shell shut down its Forcados terminal in February, citing force majeure. The terminal is still closed and Nigeria has lost US$1.6 billion as of the end of July from the closure.
Chevron and Eni have also suffered losses, and not just from the militants. Yesterday, Chevron’s Escravos oil depot was besieged by protesters from the local communities claiming the company had gone back on a commitment to create jobs for them.
By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com
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Irina is a writer for the U.S.-based Divergente LLC consulting firm with over a decade of experience writing on the oil and gas industry.