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Noble Energy selling majority stake in Chinese oil field

21st February 2014

Noble Energy Inc. to sell its majority stake in their oil field with Sinopec off northeastern China

Noble Energy Inc. to sell its majority stake in their oil field in Bohai Bay

Noble Energy Inc. has hired Lazard Ltd., a merger-advisory firm, to sell its majority stake in their oil field with Sinopec off northeastern China, the Wall Street Journal reported.

The sale of the stake can range between USD 200 million and USD 300 million, a source acquainted with the matter told the Wall Street Journal.

Noble Energy has a 57 per cent stake in the Chengdaoxi field, which began commercial operations in 2003 and produces around 4,000 barrels of crude oil a day. Sinopec Corp., China’s petroleum and chemical company, has the remaining stake.

Roc Oil Co., an Australian oil-and-gas producer, is considered one possible bidder for Noble's stake. The company has experience exploring and developing oil fields like those in Bohai Bay.  However, there has also been interest coming from other "medium-size energy companies."

Noble disclosed in a statement that its "production-sharing contract in China would expire in 2018" and that it was making arrangements to sell its Chinese assets. The company’s choice to sell its Chinese assets, according to the Wall Street Journal, is the result of “a string of asset sales in the region as global energy companies increasingly shed projects further afield to refocus on their home markets.”

Recently, Anadarko Petroleum Corp., sold its subsidiary in China for around USD 1.1 bn to Hong Kong-listed Brightoil Petroleum Holdings Ltd.  In 2010, Devon Energy Corp. also sold its stake in a Chinese offshore oil field to Cnooc Ltd., China's main offshore energy producer, for USD 370m. The deal was made as a result of Devon's intention to develop it assets in North America.

 

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