Abu Dhabi National Oil Co is awarding new concessions to foreign investors

According to people with knowledge of the situation, Austrian oil producer OMV is poised to win a deal to produce oil from offshore fields in Abu Dhabi.

While the agreement with OMV has yet to be completed, an announcement is expected in the coming weeks, the people stated, asking not to be identified because the negotiations are private.

Abu Dhabi National Oil Co, the state-owned company whose fields produce almost all the United Arab Emirates’s oil, is awarding new concessions to foreign investors to get access to technology and finance and secure markets for its crude. OMV would be the second company with links to Abu Dhabi to obtain a deal.

Abu Dhabi’s sate-run investment company, Mubadala, is the second-biggest shareholder in OMV behind the Austrian state. Spain’s Cia Espanolade Petroleos, wholly owned by Mubadala, already paid $1.5 billion for a 20 percent stake in a group of offshore fields.

An analyst with Erste Group in Budapest, Tamas Pletser said by telephone,  “A cooperation between Adnoc and OMV would be good news for OMV.” He also added, “Good relationships are what matter the most in the region with its vast reserves, and the two companies at a later stage could also refine oil.” An oil concession would probably be “only a first step.”

An Adnoc spokesman mentioned that discussions are ongoing with a number of potential partners on the remaining concession areas. OMV refused to comment.

Abu Dhabi is also striking deals with the largest buyers of its crude oil.

Earlier this week, Japan’s Inpex Corp signed a 40-year deal for a 10 percent stake in Adnoc’s Lower Zakum field for $600 million. A group of Indian companies have already paid the same amount for 10 percent of Lower Zakum field.

 

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