Norway’s biggest energy company, Statoil has sold its remaining 15.5 percent stake in the Shah Deniz field in Azerbaijan for $2.25 billion to Malaysia's Petroliam Nasional Berhad (Petronas). The transaction incorporates sales of the interest in the Shah Deniz production-sharing agreement, the share in the South Caucasus Pipeline Co. as well as its holding organization, and its 12.4 percent stake in the Stavanger-based organization, Azerbaijan Gas Supply Co., it said in an announcement.
"Statoil has created significant value by participating in the development of this asset over the years and we are pleased to announce this deal with Petronas. The divestment optimises our portfolio and strengthens our financial flexibility to prioritise industrial development and high-value growth," says Lars Christian Bacher, executive vice president for Development and Production International in Statoil.
Statoil has dumped production-growth targets and has decreased plans of investment as it tries to lift returns for shareholders in the midst of increasing expenses and stagnant energy expenses. The state-controlled company has sold assets from the North Sea to Azerbaijan for more than $20 billion since 2010.
The second-quarter production by Statoil from its Shah Deniz field was 38,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day.
Petronas, Malaysia's state-owned energy organization has exploration and productions units in more than 22 countries. As per the information posted in its site, those countries include Southeast Asia, the Middle East, Central Asia, Latin America and Africa, representing more than 75 percent its total oil and gas reserves. Petronas a month ago, announced that it has signed contracts with Mexico and Argentina to extend its operations in those regions. It also announced that in the not so distant future it may defer development of its $8.9 billion liquefied natural gas project past 2030 in Canada unless proposed taxes are brought down.
As of late Statoil has reinforced its resource base and industrial prospects set. In order to prioritize high potential future growth, Statoil has acknowledged generous quality from transactions on the Norwegian mainland rack and internationally. The existing portfolio optimization keeps on increasing monetary strength and adaptability to convey its strategy for high-value growth.
Taking after the divestment, Bacher says, "We remain committed to our business in Azerbaijan, which continues to play an important role in Statoil's international portfolio."
According to Statoil, the transaction is expected to finish as early as 2015, and is still awaiting approval regulatory approval.