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Shell (RDS.A) Secures New Concession Deal for Egypt's Red Sea

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Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A - Free Report) along with another supermajor Chevron Corporation (CVX - Free Report) and a state-owned entity Mubadala Petroleum clinched oil and gas exploration concessions in Egypt’s Red Sea. In its first ever round of licensing in the Red Sea, Egypt awarded Block 1 and Block 2 to Chevron and Shell, respectively. The third block was jointly conferred on Shell and Abu Dhabi’s Mubadala Petroleum.

Egypt was auctioning 10 blocks in its first ever licensing round in the Red Sea, which is known for its deep water. Winners of only three of the 10 blocks were declared, of which Chevron and Shell’s blocks were located in the northern part of the Red Sea.

While total exploration area of these three blocks exceeded 10,000 square kilometres, the minimum stipulated investment was $326 million wherein the potential amount may possibly escalate to $7 billion, provided discoveries were made.

Given that the Red Sea in Egypt requires heavy investments for research, exploration and development in future stages, the involvement of global companies in oil-related development creates a climate conducive to attract lucrative investments. The African country appreciates such international participation as the international players possess cutting-edge technologies with years of experience to work in sites like the Red Sea.

Since the finding of the Zohr field in 2016 by Italy-based Eni SpA (E - Free Report) , Egypt started bidding exploration rights. This Arab world’s most populous state, also successfully tendered 12 licences to companies like the US energy major ExxonMobil (XOM - Free Report) in one of its largest bidding rounds.

The exploration concession wins were in line with Shell’s growth commitment to cement its position offshore Egypt, mainly in the marine concession and deep-water regions, thereby supporting the government’s energy hub vision and increasing the LNG value chain.

The Red Sea contract awards will enable Shell to enhance its presence in the Egyptian market. The company first entered Egypt in 1911 and in 2011, it commemorated its centenary in Egypt. Most of its upstream operations mainly focus on the areas located in the Western Desert and Nile Delta. 

This Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) player is a global group of energy and petrochemical companies. The company is involved in all phases of production in the petroleum industry from exploration to final processing and delivery. It is set to report fourth-quarter 2019 results on Thursday Jan 30, before the market opens. The current Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings in the to-be-reported quarter is pegged at of $1.08 per share. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

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