TPAO to buy Total’s Shah Deniz interest for $1.5 billion

State-owned Turkish Petroleum Corp. (TPAO) has agreed to acquire 10% interest in Azerbaijan’s Shah Deniz field and the South Caucasus pipeline from Total SA for $1.5 billion.

Shah Deniz is 100 km southeast of Baku in the Caspian Sea, covering 860 sq km in 50-550 m of water. The field’s first phase started up in 2006 and is currently producing 200,000 boe/d.

A second development phase was sanctioned by the partners at the end of last year (OGJ Online, Dec. 17, 2013; Dec. 18, 2013; Dec. 29, 2013). The Shah Deniz and South Caucasus Pipeline consortia in March let project management and construction contracts for second phase development along with the South Caucasus Pipeline Expansion (SCPX) (OGJ Online, Mar. 20, 2014).

“This sale is another step forward in achieving our asset sale program,” said Michael Borrell, Total E&P senior vice-president, Continental Europe and Central Asia. “Following this operation, the group will have sold nearly $16 billion worth of asset since 2012, in line with its $15-20 billion asset sale target.”

Total has been in Azerbaijan since 1995, entering the Shah Deniz production-sharing agreement in 1996. The company remains operator of Absheron offshore field in the Caspian Sea with 40% interest. A significant gas and condensate discovery was made in 2011 on Absheron and Total is now conducting studies to prepare the field development plan (OGJ Online, Sept. 9, 2011; July 2, 2012).

Shah Deniz is operated by BP PLC with 28.83% interest. Partners are State Oil Co. of Azerbaijan Republic 16.67%, Statoil ASA 15.5%, Total 10%, OAO Lukoil 10%, Naftiran Intertrade Co. Ltd. 10%, and TPAO 9%.

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