Shell Confirms Intention to Exit South Africa Operations


By Kabelo Abel Mokgalabone

JOHANNESBURG-Petrochemical giant Shell has announced its decision to divest its shareholdings in Shell Downstream South Africa (SDSA), including the sale of all local assets, comprising over 600 service stations and forecourts.

Confirming the move, Shell informed the local publications stating, “Shell has decided to reshape the Downstream portfolio and intends to divest our shareholding in Shell Downstream South Africa.”

The decision comes amidst reported discord between the fuel retailer and its longstanding BEE partner, Thebe Investment Corporation.

The dispute revolves around Thebe’s alleged intention to activate an “opt-out” clause in its contract, leading to the cashing out of its 28% stake in SDSA

Having established a presence in South Africa since 1902, Shell holds energy exploration rights sanctioned by the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy.

This exit represents the second significant setback in the country, following the closure of the Shell/BP-owned Sapref refinery in March 2022, exacerbating the dependence on imported fuels.

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