A Nigerian court has restricted Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s access to its bank accounts in the West African country amid a legal dispute with a local oil producer over a pipeline deal six years ago.

Aiteo Eastern E&P Co Ltd is demanding billions of dollars in damages, claiming Shell misrepresented the condition of the pipeline and under-counted the volume of crude one of its facilities received from the Nigerian firm.

Shell said Aiteo’s lawsuit is baseless and it is working to overturn the freezing order.

The dispute is one among a growing list of legal entanglements related to Shell’s business with Africa’s largest crude producer. Since the start of the year, a Dutch court has ordered the company to pay compensation for oil spills in two villages more than a decade ago.

Aiteo’s allegations relate to its $2.4 billion purchase in 2015 of a 45 percent interest in an oil block and pipeline from a trio of multinational companies: Shell, Total SE, and Eni, which is Nigeria’s state-owned energy company.

Aiteo is controlled by prominent Nigerian businessman Benedict Peters.

For more information visit www.aiteogroup.com

24th February 2021