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ShellNews.net: ROYAL DUTCH SHELL EXECUTIVES JET FUELLED ARROGANCE: Sunday 21
August 2005: 11.10 ET
ROYAL DUTCH SHELL EXECUTIVES JET FUELLED
By Alfred Donovan
A report published in The Sunday Times today, reveals that
Shell senior management has bought three Falcon jet aircraft creating a Royal
Dutch Shell plc boardroom fleet of 4 luxury executive jets.
The cash to buy the jets is being generated by the one
element over which Shell management has no control - record high oil prices and
consequential humungous profits. Shell recently announced profits of £5.6
billion for the first half of 2005. In other words, Shell is currently
making almost £1 billion GB pounds per month (nearly $2 billion US dollars per
This scandal ridden company has a reputation for
incompetence, misjudgement and dishonesty (and blatant ruthlessness towards some
Shell employees). Bearing this backdrop in mind, a Shell management led by a CEO,
Jeroen van der Veer, himself facing fraud allegations in the US
courts, is demonstrating breathtaking arrogance by indulging itself in a fleet
of luxury jets. This is at a time when according to The Sunday Times, other
multinationals are getting rid of their executive planes.
It is incredibly unseemly given the controversies listed
below, which all arise from the misjudgement/misdeeds of Shell management: -
- Shell has had five Irishman jailed since June for
standing up for their principles in regards to the
- Shell has threatened to have Dr John Huong, a reserves
whistleblower and former Shell employee/geologist jailed for standing up for
Shell's claimed core principles of honesty, integrity and openness.
- Shell has announced a cost overrun of
$10 BILLION DOLLARS
in respect the Sakhalin-2 project in Russia (and a delay).
- Costs have also spiraled on the Bonga field in
Nigeria, the Athabasca oil sands project in Canada and most recently on the
Pearl GTL project in Qatar — priced at $5 billion at its launch last year,
but now already creeping up to around $6 billion.
- UK shareholders in Royal Dutch Petroleum are
threatening legal action in regards to tax penalties arising from the
unification of Shell Transport and Royal Dutch Shell. They are furious that
Shell management was disinterested in their plight until the UK press took
up their story.(Read)
- Shell management has been made to look like fools by
the spectacular success of Cairn Energy to whom Shell sold off drilling
licence rights for a pittance.
- Shell is faced with a continuing criminal
investigation by the US Justice Department into the actions of former and
current members of Shell senior management. Other investigations are still
in progress including an FSA investigation into the conduct of individual
- Shell has deliberately delayed the implementation of a
judgement in favour of Shell
where a Judge held that Shell had acted “unlawfully” in misappropriating
funds from an employee pension fund.
- Shell is faced with a Public Inquiry after the deaths
of two workers on the Brent Bravo offshore platform for which Shell has
already admitted liability and paid a record high fine of £900,000
($1,620,000 approx). (READ)
- Shell has agreed to a proposal to pay a
$90 million dollars
settlement in respect of a class action lawsuit brought against Shell by its
- Shell is faced with a separate US class action
securities fraud case which has just been given permission to
proceed by a Federal Judge - District Chief Judge John Bissell who has
accepted that Shell and certain named directors including Jeroen van der
Veer have a case to answer for alleged securities fraud in relation to the
hydrocarbon reserves scandal.
- In a third US class action lawsuit fourteen individual
plaintiffs have charged Royal Dutch Shell with violations of customary
international law. This is in relating to Shell's oil operations in
Ogoniland, an area located in the Niger River delta area of Nigeria. "The
complaint alleges that Shell engaged in militarized commerce in a conspiracy
with the former Military Government of Nigeria and that Shell knowingly
instigated, planned, facilitated, and participated in unprovoked attacks by
the Nigerian military against the unarmed residents of Ogoniland, resulting
in extrajudicial murder, crimes against humanity, torture, rape, cruel,
inhuman and degrading treatment, arbitrary arrest and detention, forced
exile and the deliberate destruction of private property." Shell has
already admitted after the leaking of a Shell internal report that the
corporate behaviour of Royal Dutch/Shell in Nigeria fed a vicious cycle of
violence and corruption.
- Shell management has lost its attempt via proceedings
issued through the World Intellectual Property Organisation to seize the
domain name for its own new
company ROYAL DUTCH SHELL PLC:
www.royaldutchshellplc.com The fact that a private individual, the
author of this article, owns and uses the domain name, stands as a monument
to the blithering incompetence of Shell management. Jeroen van dr Veer and
his colleagues knew before anyone else of their plans for the unified
business to trade under the name ROYAL DUTCH SHELL PLC but failed to ensure
that the domain name was secured.
For Shell senior management to reward itself with a fleet
of luxury jets against the above backdrop of misjudgement and gross ineptitude
is simply obscene and shows that it has learnt nothing from the series of
dramatic revelations since January 2004 which have destroyed Shell’s reputation.
The Sunday Times article:
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