Canadian Natural Resources to buy Barrick Energy

Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. agreed to acquire Barrick Energy Inc., a subsidiary of Barrick Gold Corp., to acquire BEI’s assets and light oil production in Alberta, including certain lands at Nipisi, for a total price of $223 million (Can).

Terms call for CNR to pay $173 million and a $50 million royalty, Barrick of Toronto said.

Separately, Barrick also plans to sell some assets to Venturion Oil Ltd. for $59 million and to Whitecap Resources Inc. for about $174 million, the mining company said.

The current production, before royalties, from the working interests acquired by CNR, is 4,200 b/d of light crude oil and natural gas liquids along with 4.4 MMcfd of natural gas. The transaction includes properties in Worsley, Puskwa, Sturgeon Lake, Retlaw, and Red Earth.

Barrick also is selling 92,160 net acres of unproved land at Nipisi to CNR. An independent engineering report estimates that acreage contains 38.6 million of contingent resource (based on technology under development), the companies said.

CNR Pres. Steve Laut said, “This acquisition further strengthens Canadian Natural’s light oil asset and production base in key operating areas and contributes to the light oil balance in the company’s diversified portfolio.”

Closing was expected by July 31, subject to normal conditions.

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