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China close to inking West African oil deal

17th July 2012

PetroChina eyes stake in West Africa through multimillion dollar deal with African Petroleum

China close to inking West African oil deal
China has invested USD 64bn in oil and gas ventures in the past seven years, according to reports

A Chinese state-run oil firm could acquire its first stake in West African oil blocks as other countries scramble to exploit the hydrocarbon-rich region, it emerged this week.

PetroChina could acquire a 20 per cent stake in African Petroleum for the development of blocks located in West Africa. If sealed, the multimillion dollar deal will see China make its first move into the region’s oil and gas sector.

Oil exploration off the coast of West Africa has surged since 2007 when Tullow Oil found the Jubilee field, one of the continent's biggest recent finds.

PetroChina has until August to come to a decision on the deal which, if inked, could see future investments rise to as much as USD 800m.

The largest license holder in West Africa, African Petroleum focuses primarily in Liberia. It holds over 10 blocks in Guinea, Ivory Coast, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Gambia and Liberia. The company will start a new wave of deepwater drilling in December in Gambia and Liberia.

PetroChina’s Fushun refinery last year increased crude refining capacity from 200,000 bpd to 230,000 bpd.  
China has invested USD 64bn in oil and gas ventures in the past seven years, according to reports.

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