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Dubai’s Dragon Oil is building on its recent bid round success in Algeria by placing an offer for Irish independent Petroceltic, a stakeholder in the 3.4 bcm/year Ain Tsila gas development in the country’s Southeast.
Dragon Oil, which is majority-owned by Dubai’s Emirates National Oil Company (ENOC), has offered $800mn for Petroceltic, which also holds several exploration licences in Egypt. The bid is not formal, and stock exchange rules require backing from Dragon Oil’s shareholders. It is also contingent on approval by the Algerian government.
The acquisition would widen Dragon Oil’s footprint in Algeria, where it was last week awarded two concessions, and give it access to the Egyptian upstream, where Petroceltic’s sole producing asset sits alongside a string of exploration licences. The Dubai company currently only produces at the lucrative Cheleken concession in Turkmenistan, but holds acreage in several Middle Eastern countries. Petroceltic also owns exploration licences in Iraqi Kurdistan and a range of European countries.
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