Dallas, Texas 09/13/2013 (Financialstrend) – On Thursday, Statoil (STO:STLO), the Norwegian oil company said that it might have relied too much on the Algerian military protection at the company’s Ain Amenas gas facility. This facility has been attacked in January by armed terrorists.
In a report on this incident, the company said that there is a definite reason to question this reliance on the Algerian military.
A militant group that was linked to the Al Qaida stormed this facility on 16 January. The facility is run jointly by STLO, BP and Sonatrach, the Algerian State company. In the standoff that followed with the Algerian forces, forty workers perished, along with twenty nine militants.
Helge Lund, the company’s Chief Executive Officer said that in their assessment, the Algerian forces had the capacity to withstand this attack. He also stated that as a company, STLO should have been closer to the local security work in Algeria and that they have now improved on that aspect.
Torgeir Hagen, who had headed Statoil’s investigation, said this assault was completely unprecedented. According to the report, the inner security arrangements at the site such as the unarmed guards, protective barriers and the access control were all the responsibility of the joint-venture. On the other hand, the perimeter security was handled by the Algerian military units.
The CEO told the reporters that the attackers could not be prevented by the Algerian troops and that all the security measures had been unsuccessful in withstanding or delaying an attack of this kind. He said that the company had relied on the Algerian military protection to work in an effective manner
On the other hand, Algeria has simply bristled on all the criticism. As far as they are concerned, the fact that the commandos stormed the site was in itself a victory. The President of the country had also praised its military for taking back the Statoil (STO:STLO) gas plant. Post the incident, the military will now be in complete control of providing security to oil units in the country.