Sinopec Makes Offer for Ghana Oil Stake

Jubilee Field
(Click to Enlarge)

LAGOS, Nigeria (Dow Jones), Oct. 26, 2009

Chinese oil giant Sinopec has made an offer to the Ghanaian government to jointly bid for a stake in a major oil discovery off the coast of the West Africa country, according to a person familiar with the matter.

Sinopec, represented by Neil Bush, the younger brother of former U.S. President George W. Bush, recently made an offer to the Ghana National Petroleum Corp., or GNPC, to form a joint bid for a stake in the Jubilee field, the person said.

GNPC officials rejected the initial offer, according to the person, and are waiting to hear from all potential partners before making a decision.

Bush couldn't be reached for comment.

Several other foreign oil companies, including Total SA, BP PLC and Cnooc, have sent representatives to Ghana for talks with the government about acquiring a stake in the oil field. So far all of the overtures are expressions of interest and don't represent actual deals, according to a Ghanaian government source.

The Jubilee stake in question is owned by U.S. company Kosmos Energy, which has said it signed a binding agreement with ExxonMobil Corp. for the stake, for an estimated $4 billion.

GNPC representatives say they have the right of refusal for any such agreement.

Senior Exxon officials arrive in Ghana later Monday for meetings with government officials to discuss the deal, according to a person close to the talks.  

Copyright (c) 2009 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

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