BP wins US waiver to sell gas fields

The Daily Telegraph - Business - - Front Page - By Jil­lian Am­brose

BP will be able to move ahead with a long-awaited sale of a clutch of its North Sea gas fields after win­ning a waiver from US au­thor­i­ties to al­low the deal to go ahead.

US fi­nan­cial sanc­tions on Iran had threat­ened to de­rail the £300m sale to Ser­ica En­ergy be­cause Iran’s sta­te­owned oil pro­ducer IOC owns a stake in one of the North Sea fields in­cluded in the pack­age. The US has now granted an ex­emp­tion that means all rev­enues from the field owed to IOC will be held in es­crow for as long as sanc­tions ap­ply.

In ad­di­tion, IOC will be stripped of any de­ci­sion­mak­ing pow­ers re­gard­ing the Rhum field. There had been wor­ries that the field, in the north­ern North Sea off the coast of Shet­land, could have been shut down while the sanc­tions were in force. Rhum sup­plies about 3pc of the UK’s gas.

Ser­ica En­ergy’s share price jumped by a third fol­low­ing the waiver.

Mitch Flegg, Ser­ica’s chief ex­ec­u­tive, said the ex­emp­tion should clear the path for the deal, which also in­cludes the Bruce and Keith fields, to com­plete by the end of next month. BP and Ser­ica UK have agreed on Nov 30 as the re­vised com­ple­tion date for sale.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.