Gulf Oil and Gas accountACCOUNT

Shell and Total sign natural gas agreement - South Rub Al-Khali

Source: www.GulfOilandGas.com 7/16/2003, Location: Middle East

The Royal Dutch/Shell Group of Companies and Total signed an agreement with the Government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, to form a Joint Venture with Saudi Aramco for the exploration of gas in an area of 200,000 km in the southern part of the Rub Al-Khali (the Empty Quarter).

Shell, as leader of the Consortium, will retain a participation of 40% of the new Joint Venture, with Saudi Aramco and Total each 30% participation.

Jeroen van der Veer, President of Royal Dutch and Vice Chairman of the Royal Dutch/Shell Group of Companies, representing the Consortium, met today with His Excellency Ali bin Ibrahim Al-Naimi, Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, to finalise the agreement. Mr van der Veer was accompanied by Mr. Alain Lechevalier, Vice President Middle East, Exploration & Production of Total.

Mr van der Veer commented: "This agreement is an important breakthrough as it heralds the first time after the creation of Saudi Aramco that foreign International Oil Companies have gained access to gas acreage in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, holder of the world’s largest reserves of oil and gas. Shell, on behalf of the Consortium, is naturally proud to be part of this historic moment."

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