Shell plans to temporarily shut a key oil pipeline in southern Nigeria later this month to repair damage caused by oil thieves, leading to a cut of around 150,000 barrels per day, the company said Tuesday.
The Nembe Creek Trunkline in Nigeria, Africa’s biggest oil producer with output at around two million barrels per day, will be closed for a nine-day period.
The pipeline has been repeatedly hit by sabotage and theft. Oil theft has been estimated as costing Nigeria some $6 billion (4.7 billion euros) per year.
“We plan to shut it down this month to remove some bunkering points,” said Precious Okolobo, spokesman for the Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC), a Nigerian subsidiary for the Anglo-Dutch firm.
Bunkering is the local term for oil theft.