Jordan Parliament Approves Shell Oil Exploration Deal

AMMAN, Jordan (Dow Jones Newswires), Jul. 16, 2009

The Jordanian Parliament has approved a multibillion-dollar concession agreement with Royal Dutch Shell PLC to explore oil from Jordan's vast oil shale resources, a source at the country's Natural Resources Authority said Thursday.

"The council of deputies has ratified the agreement during a session held Wednesday," the source told Dow Jones Newswires.

Shell is expected to spend around $500 million on exploration, assessment and designs on the project, Jordan's Energy Minister Khaldoun Qutishat told parliament.

Some $150 million will be paid to the Jordanian government before the contracting company begins investing in the project, he added.

Shell is expected to invest billions in the project over 20 years. The project would cover an area of 22,000 square kilometers and could produce thousands of barrels of oil from oil shale.  

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