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Shell Names John Abbott as Oil Refining Chief

Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSA), Europe’s largest oil company, named John Abbott as refining director to succeed Ben van Beurden, who will become chief executive officer in January.

Abbott, a 30-year industry veteran, has been running about 30 refineries and petrochemical plants at the company, The Hague-based Shell said today in a statement. He will leave his current post of executive vice president for manufacturing on Oct. 1 and will also join Shell’s executive committee.

Abbott, a British national, joined the company in 1981 after graduating from Birmingham University in central England. He had several jobs running refineries, petrochemical plants and heavy-crude production projects from North America to Asia.

In Canada, Abbott supervised Shell’s oil-sands ventures, facing environmental protests, and managed an associated carbon-capture and storage project. He has been in charge of the company’s investment program to raise heavy-oil output by 60 percent in the decade to 2020 by upgrading assets in North America.

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To contact the editor responsible for this story: Will Kennedy at

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