Technology and innovation provide ways for Shell to stand apart from its competitors. They help our current businesses perform, and they make our future businesses possible. Over the last five years our spend on R&D averaged more than $1 billion annually – more than any other international energy company. In 2011, R&D expenditures were $1.1 billion, compared with $1.0 billion in 2010 and $1.1 billion in 2009. We also anticipate spending figures in the same range in the coming years.
Sustained investment in our key business technologies pays off. Some 30 years ago we started working on chemicals for enhanced oil recovery that include polymer solutions like the one that is being injected since early 2010 into the Marmul field in Oman. There it is expected to boost oil recovery by some 10% or more. Shell has also pioneered deep-water exploration and production over the decades, recently producing oil and gas through the Perdido platform in the Gulf of Mexico. Perdido is moored in water deeper than that of any other vertical-access platform, tapping fields under more than 2,450 metres (8,000 feet) of water.