Monday, March 12, 2007

Indian Oil to buy French company Maurel & Prom’s assets in Congo for $1.5 bn

Indian Oil Corporation is likely to acquire French company Maurel & Prom's stake in oilfields in Congo for about $1.5 bn.

Maurel & Prom had announced sale of its interest in the producing fields of M'Boundi and Kouakouala and other exploration areas in Congo to Eni of Italy for $1.434 bn. Maurel & Prom had announced sale of its 48.6% interest in the M'Boundi oil field and 66 % in the Kouakouala A oilfield to Eni. Besides, it was selling 50% in Kouakouala B, C, D exploration blocks and 50% Kouilou exploration permit. But the transaction was subject to waiver of pre-emption right by partner Burren Energy of UK. The British firm has time till the end of March to exercise its pre-emption right. Indian Oil and its partner Oil India Limited are in advanced stage of discussions with Burren Energy for possible takeover of Maurel & Prom's interest in Congo.

Burren Energy wants operatorship of the fields in Congo. By exercising its pre-emption right, it will first acquire Maurel & Prom's interest in the fields and through a back-to-back agreement sell most of it to Indian Oil-Oil India combine. Burren Energy has 31.5% interest in M'Boundi field and 25% interest in Kouakouala. If the acquisition goes through, IOC-OIL will get 17,000 barrels of oil per day from M'Boundi field in 2007. This will increase to 28,000 barrels per day in 2010.

Read The Economic Times article.

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