Shell abandons $6.5 billion petrochemical project due to poor economic climate in energy industry

According to the “Financial Times” report on January 15, 2015, Royal Dutch Shell announced on January 14, 2015 that it had already given up its cooperation with Qatar Petroleum to launch a petrochemical project worth US$6.5 billion (approximately RMB 40.27 billion). The plan is due to "the current economic climate of the energy industry."

The Al Karaana joint venture project established between Qatar Petroleum and Shell in accordance with the ratio of 80:20 was originally planned to produce 2 million tons of petrochemical products each year, mainly for the Asian market. Shell stated that the decision not to advance the project was made after “a careful and comprehensive assessment of the commercial quotation of the project, procurement and construction bidders”. The decision is a major move taken by Shell since the price of oil fell by 50% since last summer.

Crude oil prices have fallen by more than 50% since mid-June last year, benefiting some people and causing losses to some people. For oil companies, the drop in oil prices triggered an industry-wide assessment of capital expenditures. The so-called oil giants expect to cut billions of dollars in spending on exploration and development projects in the coming year and delay or even abandon certain projects.

Shell issued its first profit warning in history last year. Under the pressure of improving profits, the company has implemented a round of cost-cutting measures before the international oil price dropped from more than US$110 to US$50 per barrel last summer. The company is committed to making profits instead of output growth. The goal is to provide investors with $30 billion in returns through dividends and stock repurchases in 2014 and 2015.

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