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>>Some say Gharwar may have been damaged by poor management

Is this anything more than a rumor? I have heard that Simmons said this but coming from him I regard that as malicious, self-profiting rumor mongering. He inflames opinion (guess what, to the benefit of his consulting business) by calling the Saudi royal family out-and-out liars. This is not helpful IMO for getting at the truth. I would trust better something from a person who actually knows something about this very large Saudi field.

I think I do have access to some info and opinion from a reservoir with relevant experience and contacts. From that I am inclined to disbelieve the allegation that Gawar has been damaged by mis-management.

Agreed, the Saudis are way too un-transparent and one is inclined to wonder just why they are so secretive. It's annoying but this is a very secretive culture, as I see it derived from centuries of barely surviving out in the desert where the only law is the sword and the horse. But we have no better option than to deal with it.

Best wishes -- C44
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