Shell, PetroChina bid for Arrow gets court approval

Rick Wilkinson
OGJ Correspondent

MELBOURNE, July 30 -- Australia’s Federal Court has approved the $3.5 billion (Aus.) acquisition of Brisbane-based coal seam gas producer Arrow Energy Ltd. by Royal Dutch Shell PLC and PetroChina.

Arrow shareholders had overwhelmingly supported the all-cash proposal during an extraordinary general meeting on July 14. Each share of Arrow was priced at $4.70 (Aus.).

The shareholders also will receive a single share of Dart Energy Ltd. for every two shares of Arrow they hold. Dart now holds Arrow’s 90% interest in Arrow International among other assets.

The court’s approval has been lodged with the Australian Securities and Investments Commissions on July 30 and Arrow shareholders will receive the cash for their shares on Aug. 6.

Shell Australia Chairman Russell Caplan said Shell and PetroChina will bring LNG expertise and deep access to markets as well as the capital needed for the large-scale, long-life integrated CSG-to-LNG project proposed for Gladstone using the gas resources originally proved up by Arrow in the Surat and Bowen basins of Queensland.

Caplan added that the joint venture with PetroChina will become an important growth asset for Shell and help meet growing demand for cleaner energy in Australia and international markets.

The 50-50 JV will own Arrow’s CSG assets and domestic power business as well as Shell’s individual CSG assets in the region and its interest in the planned LNG plant on Curtis Island near Gladstone.

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