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CNOOC is Seeking Hunt Oil's Stake in Yemen Project

Source: www.gulfoilandgas.com 1/30/2007, Location: Middle East

China National Offshore Oil Corp. is in talks to buy Hunt Oil Co.'s stake in Yemen's first liquefied-natural-gas project to help it meet China's fast-rising energy needs, according to company officials familiar with the situation.

Cnooc has made a nonbinding offer of slightly less than $600 million for closely held Hunt Oil's assets, as part of its long-term strategy of finding supplies for future LNG import terminals that it is building along China's coast, the officials said.

Dallas-based Hunt has a 17.22% stake in Yemen LNG Co., which is developing a $3.7 billion project to produce 6.7 million tons a year of LNG for the first time in the Middle East's poorest state, located on the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden. First output is scheduled at the end of 2008.

Talks between Cnooc and Hunt come at a time when U.S. lawmakers have expressed concern at a proposed $16 billion LNG investment by Cnooc in Iran, which Washington worries will undermine its efforts to isolate Tehran for refusing to abandon its nuclear program.

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