Oil & gas round-up: BP judicially criticised for attempt to block oil spill payments

on Nov 25, 2013
Updated: Oct 21, 2019

iNVEZZ.com, Monday, November 25: BP Plc (LON:BP) has been criticised by the judge hearing the civil case over the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill, the Financial Times has reported, he accusing the company’s lawyers of ‘deeply disappointing’ actions. BP’s share price has declined marginally in London trading so far today.

Chevron Corp (NYSE:CVX) last week raised doubts over the future of its Rosebank oil prospect off the coast of Scotland, noting that it would be unprofitable to bring the field into production at this time. Chevron’s share price has inched lower in pre-market trading on the NYSE today.
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**Judge criticises BP for attempt to block payments**
The FT quoted Justice Carl Barbier as saying in an order released late on Friday that the UK oil giant had made a ‘startling’ reversal of its previous statements as it tried to block what it saw as excessive compensation payments under the oil spill settlement agreed last year.
Last week, BP asked an appeals court for an injunction to stop some payments under the settlement while it tries to overturn Judge Barbier’s decision to uphold the interpretation of the settlement by the court-appointed administrator, Patrick Juneau. BP claims that Juneau has approved millions of dollars in compensation for economic losses not related to the spill.

Justice Barbier noted that BP had through its counsel made ‘unwarranted’ accusations against Juneau, as well as a ‘document dump into the record of this case, without leave of court’.
In addition to presiding over the disputed settlement, Judge Barbier is also hearing the ongoing civil liability trial related to the spill, including BP’s penalties under the Clean Water Act.

**As of 12:19 UTC, buy BP shares at 492.25p.**
**As of 12:19 UTC, sell BP shares at 492.15p.**
**Chevron raises doubts over Rosebank development**
Bloomberg quoted California-based Chevron as saying in an e-mailed statement on Friday that the development of its North Sea Rosebank prospect was not currently economically attractive. The US energy giant noted that Rosebank did not “currently offer an economic value proposition that justifies proceeding with an investment of this magnitude”, without specifying the projected cost of the venture.

Rosebank, located in the North Sea to the west of Shetland, is estimated to contain 240 million barrels of oil. A decision by Chevron to pull out of the project would be a blow for hopes of reviving North Sea oil production. Earlier this year, Norway’s Statoil sold its stake in the project to Austria’s OMV.

The news is also a setback for Cameron International Inc (NYSE:CAM), a provider of flow equipment products, systems and services to the oil industry, which earlier this year landed a $540 million (£334 million) contract from Chevron for equipment work at Rosebank. Cameron said in a statement that it would continue to work on elements of its successful tender and would work with Chevron and its partners to improve the project’s economics.
**On November 22, buy Chevron shares at $124.60.**
**On November 22, sell Chevron shares at $123.01.**
**On November 22, buy Cameron shares at $55.91.**
**On November 22, sell Cameron shares at $53.79.**
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