Engie CEO Says Higher Oil Price Aids E&P Asset Sale, In No Rush
PARIS, Sept 29 (Reuters) - The chief executive of French gas and power group Engie said on Thursday that higher oil prices improved prospects for the sale of its exploration and production assets, but that the company would hold out for the right price.
"What is important for us is not how quickly we sell the assets, but the best window of opportunity, which means we could wait a while," Isabelle Kocher told reporters.
Kocher told Reuters last week that Engie would exit from oil and gas exploration and stop burning coal, but dismissed comments by the CGT union that it was considering selling its liquefied natural gas (LNG) activities.
Kocher said Engie was "looking at various scenarios to divest the assets", but did not give further details.
Earlier this year, sources told Reuters French oil company Total had held talks to buy all or part of its domestic rival's exploration and production assets. Engie rejected the offers, saying they were too low, two sources said at the time.
Oil prices soared more than 6 percent to trade above $48 on Wednesday on news of the first agreement by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries to limit its production since 2008.
Goldman Sachs forecast the deal to curb output could add $7 to $10 to oil prices in the first half of next year.
(Reporting by Bate Felix; writing by Richard Lough; Editing by Adrian Croft)
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