What’s next after Nexen?

After publishing promising Q1 figures and announcing a $1.93bn LNG deal, CNOOC is looking to the future.

Nexen HQ

China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) has announced an increase in first quarter revenues to 55.31bn yuan ($8.89bn due in part to increased production from its recent acquisition of Nexen Inc.

Chairman Wang Yilin and CEO Li Fanrong have travelled to Canada to discuss CNOOC’s future and Nexen’s role within it.

More than 1,000 people, or approximately one third of Nexen’s workforce, congregated at the company’s head office in Calagry to attend a presentation from Wang, now chairman of Nexen Inc, who assured workers there would be no immediate lay-offs or reductions in employee compensation. He also claimed CNOOC’s plan was to allow Nexen to remain autonomous.

As well as increasing the Chinese major’s oil production by about 20%, the latest purchase will also give CNOOC exposure to more diversified energy assets, such as oil sands. As China continues to set increasingly rigorous standards, investing in cleaner fuels will be a valuable asset to the company.

Li Fanrong has said CNOOC will now focus on developing the “full potential of Nexen’s resources”, refraining from any large oil deals in “the very short term.”

However, China’s largest offshore oil producer has not stayed away from international acquisitions for too long, and recently signed a $1.93bn agreement to buy liquefied natural gas (LNG) from BG Group in Australia. Under the contract, CNOOC will purchase five million metric tons of LNG annually from BG, and the two companies jointly invest in building two LNG cargo ships.