Sasol Considers Selling PNG Assets

SYDNEY - South Africa's Sasol Ltd. is mulling the sale of its natural gas exploration assets in Papua New Guinea, nearly five years after it began a hunt for reserves to support a project turning the gas into liquid fuels. 

Sasol owns stakes in two licenses in the forelands region of Papua New Guinea, close to where other international energy companies have made several natural gas discoveries. However, an exploration well drilled in one of the licenses by Sasol in mid-2011 failed to find commercial quantities of natural gas. 

"Sasol is considering divesting from Papua New Guinea," Alex Anderson, a company spokesman, told The Wall Street Journal by email. "We are currently engaging interested parties." 

Sasol--the world's biggest producer of motor fuels from coal--owns 41% of an exploration block known as PPL 426, with the remaining interest held by Canada's Talisman Energy Inc. and Japan's Mitsui & Co. 

It also has a majority stake in the adjacent PPL 287 block, which it has been exploring with Talisman.


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