Report: BP ponders $12B asset sale to Apache

Posted: Monday, July 12, 2010

LONDON - BP PLC declined to comment Sunday on a report that it is in talks about possibly selling $12 billion worth of assets, including a stake in Alaska's Prudhoe Bay oil field, to U.S. oil company Apache Corp.

London's Sunday Times said Houston-based Apache was discussing the possibility of acquiring BP assets. The newspaper did not cite a source for its report. BP spokesman Robert Wine and Apache spokesman Bob Dye both said their companies would not comment on "speculation."

Natalie Loman, an Alaska-based spokeswoman for ConocoPhillips, which owns about 36 percent of the Prudhoe Bay field, also declined to comment on the "market rumors." BP owns 26 percent of the field and ExxonMobil Corp. holds a stake of about 36 percent.

Apache's exploration and production interests include the Gulf of Mexico, Western sedimentary basin of Canada, Egypt, western Australia, the North Sea and South America.

The Sunday Times separately said that ExxonMobil is considering a bid for BP. Citing oil industry sources, the paper said ExxonMobil had approached the Obama administration for clearance to make a takeover offer.

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