SHELL OUTBIDS MOBIL FOR SAMOA FUEL CONTRACT

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APIA, Samoa (Samoa Observer/PINA, Dec. 15) - Shell Oil Company has won the bid to supply and distribute petroleum products in Samoa for the next five years, Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi announced.

The contract is currently held by Mobil Oil.

According to the Government, the bidding for the Petroleum Supply and Distribution Tender was strongly contested by British Petroleum, Mobil Oil and Shell.

"Shell offered the cheapest offer," Prime Minister Tuilaepa said. "That is why they were awarded the contract over the other two companies.

"In the next five years, this will also be the same situation where companies will be invited to offer bids."

Mobil Oil has until August to pack up operations and make way for Shell.

The Government petrol holding tanks at Sogi, Faleolo Airport, Asau, and Apia Wharf will all be available to Shell.

Tuilaepa said that all of the agreements between Mobil Oil and the Government will be extended to Shell.

He also stressed that the new relationship will result in benefits for local consumers and local companies who have high level of dependence on petroleum fuel.

This included Polynesian Airlines and the Electric Power Corporation.

"The prices would be based on the new terms of the offer," he said. "It will continue to be recalculated every month to reflect price movements on the international markets."

Commenting on the relations with Mobil Oil, Tuilaepa said the government was grateful for their service.

He explained also that in the past, Shell had previously won the tender and Mobil had then later won the bid from them.

The competitive nature of the tender system offered Samoa the option to choose the best possible supply for Samoa from time to time, he said.

Mobil Oil was at first unaware of the government announcement. It said it had just that day been faxed a letter asking for a meeting the following morning.

December 15, 2002

Pacific Islands News Association (PINA) Website: http://www.pinanius.org 

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