(Hong Kong, March 14, 2010) CNOOC Limited (the “Company" or “CNOOC Ltd.”, NYSE: CEO, SEHK: 0883) announces today that the Company, proposes to form a 50%/50% joint venture with Bridas Energy Holdings Ltd (“BEH”) in Bridas Corporation ("Bridas" or the “JVCo”) for a consideration of approximately USD3.1 billion in cash. In this connection, CNOOC International Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Company, entered into the relevant transaction documents with BEH on 13 March 2010. The JVCo is currently a wholly owned subsidiary of BEH and could have its name changed after transaction completion. The transaction will be funded from the internal resources of the Company.
Completion of this transaction is conditional on, amongst others, necessary government and regulatory approvals of People’s Republic of China, and is expected to take place in the first half of 2010.
Upon completion of the transaction, the Company and BEH will each hold a 50% interest in Bridas, and will jointly make management decisions. Currently, Bridas, through its affiliates (including a 40% interest in Pan American Energy LLC) has oil and gas exploration and production activities in Argentina, Bolivia and Chile.
This transaction is aligned with the Company’s growth strategy by expanding its reach into Latin America and establishes a foundation for future growth in the region and other countries.
Based on relevant 2009 statistics and on a proportionate basis, it is expected that, upon completion of the transaction, proven reserves and average daily production of the Company will be increased by 318 million barrels of oil equivalent (“BOE”) and 46 thousand BOE respectively.
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Fu Chengyu said: “BEH is one of the foremost companies in Argentina and a pioneer in the oil and gas industry. This joint venture is aligned with our philosophy of seeking partnerships to expand our global footprints. I trust this investment will bring value to our shareholders both in short term and long run.”
Commenting on the joint venture, President, Mr. Yang Hua said: “Bridas, with a world-class oil and gas asset portfolio, is a very good beachhead for us to enter Latin America. Through this transaction, we’ll establish a fair presence in this region, which will further enable the Company’s production and reserve growth in the future.”
- End –
Notes to Editors:
This press release includes “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including statements regarding expected future events, business prospectus or financial results. The words “believe”, “intend”, “expect”, “anticipate”, “project”, “estimate”, “plan”, “predict” and similar expressions are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. These statements are based on assumptions and analyses made by us that we believe are reasonable under the circumstances. However, whether actual results and developments will meet our expectations and predictions depend on a number of risks and uncertainties which could cause our actual results, performance and financial condition to differ materially from our expectations. For a description of these and other risks and uncertainties, please see the documents we file from time to time with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission, including our 2008 Annual Report on Form 20-F filed on May 8, 2009.
*** *** *** ***
For further enquiries, please contact:
Mr. Jiang Yongzhi
Joint Company Secretary and General Manager of Investor Relations Department
Ms. Sharon Fung
Ketchum Newscan Public Relations Ltd