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Sunday Telegraph: Watts: 'I always acted properly': "...the Financial Services Authority last week announced that it would take no action against him over the company's oil reserves scandal. The move was greeted with surprise by company watchers as it came more than a year after the FSA fined Royal Dutch Shell 17m for overstating its oil and gas reserves.": Sunday 13 November 2005

By Sylvia Pfeifer (Filed: 13/11/2005)

Sir Philip Watts, the former chairman of Shell, the oil giant, has launched a robust defence of his actions over the reserves scandal at the company. Watts was speaking out for the first time after the Financial Services Authority last week announced that it would take no action against him over the company's oil reserves scandal.

The move was greeted with surprise by company watchers as it came more than a year after the FSA fined Royal Dutch Shell 17m for overstating its oil and gas reserves. It also came after Watts's lawyers earlier this summer clashed with the regulator's enforcement arm in front of the FSA's regulatory decisions committee, which decides whether allegations warrant action.

Watts said: "I have always accepted that the reserves recategorisation happened 'on my watch'. But I have also always maintained that I at all times acted properly and in good faith. That is why my having been exonerated of these damaging allegations is so important to me.

"Being given the opportunity recently to make written and oral representations to the FSA's regulatory decisions committee was the first real opportunity I have had in this entire saga properly to respond to the allegations made against me. "

He added: "The past 18 months have been enormously demanding. I could not have survived it without the support of my wife Jan, my family and close friends."

14 September 2005: Former Shell chief loses appeal over reserves
26 July 2005: FSA says that reserves report targeted corporate personality, not individuals

 

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