| CALGARY, Alberta
CALGARY, Alberta Dec 14 Norwegian oil company
Statoil ASA has agreed to sell its Canadian oil sands
assets to Calgary-based Athabasca Oil Corp in a deal
worth up to C$832 million, Statoil said in a statement on
The transaction covers the 24,000 barrel per day Leismer oil
sands plant in northern Alberta, the undeveloped Corner oil
sands project and a number of midstream contracts associated
with Leismer production.
Statoil will receive C$435 million in cash, 100 million
common shares in Athabasca worth C$147 million, and up to C$250
million in a series of contingent payments triggered at U.S.
crude prices above $65 a barrel.
Once the deal is complete Statoil will no longer operate any
oil sands assets, but will still be a partner in five offshore
oilfields in the Atlantic Canada region.
"This transaction corresponds with Statoil's strategy of
portfolio optimisation to enhance financial flexibility and
focus capital on core activities globally, including offshore
Newfoundland, Canada," Lars Christian Bacher, Statoil's
Executive Vice-President for Development and Production
International said in a statement.
Statoil halted development on the Corner project in
September 2014, citing rising costs and limited space on export
pipelines connecting Alberta to U.S. markets.
The Canadian government approved expansions to two major
export pipelines out of western Canada last month, but the oil
sands still carry some of the world's highest full-cycle
breakeven costs globally.
Athabasca said its output will more than treble to 40,000
barrels of oil equivalent per day as a result of the
transaction, which adds to its existing Hangingstone oil sands
project and light oil production in the Montney and Duvernay
shale plays in western Canada.
In the third quarter of 2016 the company's production
averaged 12,000 boepd.
"This transaction is transformational for Athabasca and
establishes scale with top tier thermal assets and people,"
Athabasca's chief executive Robert Broen said in a statement.
(Reporting by Nia Williams; editing by Grant McCool)