China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) has completed its acquisition of Canadian oil sands producer OPTI Canada Inc. for £2.1 billion. The deal will significantly expand China's presence in the Canadian oil sands industry and will see CNOOC receive OPTI's current 35% stake in Long Lake and three other project areas in Alberta.
CNOOC will also assume $2 billion dollars of debt and will have to pay OPTI shareholders a further $34 million for its stake in the troubled Canadian company, which has been under-performing since 2008 due to liquidity issues.
Closer to home, CNOOC has announced plans to build the country's first floating Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) receiving and storage facility off the coast of Tianjin, northeast China. The project will cost 5.7 billion yuan ($892 million) and should start operation by 2014. Once completed, the floating plant will be able to receive 2.2 million tons of fuel annually, all of which will be imported into the mainland.
China's top three oil firms are continually looking for more creative and cost effective ways to meet the nations increasing energy demands as rising costs of land-based facilities, combined with the increasing difficulties of winning state approval, ebb away at company margins.
CNOOC will team up with the Tianjin port authority to build a 6 million ton-per-year onshore LNG terminal, which it hopes to have operational by 2015, according to Chinese state media. LNG now makes up around 10% of the country's total gas use and will continue to rise as energy firms strive to meet cleaner fuel requirements.
Published 19th December, 2011
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