NIGERIA – ExxonMobil, an American multinational oil and gas corporation with significant operations in Nigeria’s oil industry, has announced the appointment of Richard Laing as the new chairman and managing director of its three affiliates in Nigeria.

ExxonMobil’s subsidiaries in Nigeria include Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited, Esso Exploration and Production Nigeria Limited, and Esso Exploration and Production Nigeria (Offshore East).

A statement from the Oil major revealed that Laing’s appointment was effective August this year and he will replace outgoing MD Paul McGrath.

Paul McGrath according to ExxonMobil’s statement leaves the Nigeria subsidiary after 3 years at helm.

McGrath will move to Houston where he will assume office as the new vice president of Global Projects for ExxonMobil .

Prior to his appointment, Laing was the executive director of oil and gas production and related support groups for all of the ExxonMobil affiliates in Nigeria.

“It is a privilege to lead the ExxonMobil team in Nigeria and build on the work that Paul McGrath has done over the last three years,” Laing was quoted as saying.

“I look forward to the work that lies ahead and continuing the company’s outstanding relationships.”

Laing joined ExxonMobil in 1989 and has held a variety of engineering, planning, safety and managerial positions in upstream and downstream operations while working in the United Kingdom, Qatar, US and Nigeria.

Laing holds a bachelor’s degree in mining and petroleum engineering from the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow as well as a master’s in petroleum engineering from Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh.

The new MD takes office even as ExxonMobil and its American counterpart Chevron, posted their worst losses in modern history.

The company’s fortunes were adversely hurt by the COVID-19 pandemic and a glut in crude oil destroyed the demand for energy products in the second quarter of 2020.

ExxonMobil, in its latest earnings results, revealed a $1.1 billion loss in Q2 2020 while Chevron Corporation declared a whopping loss of about $8.3 billion.

The earnings results by the two oil giants marked a dramatic reversal from earnings recorded in 2019 where they earned US$3.1 billion and US$4.3 billion in profits respectively.

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