Nigeria Signs Offshore Deals With International Oils Companies

AP, May 21, 2002

ABUJA, Nigeria (AP) _ Nigeria signed deals Monday with three international companies _ Exxon Mobil Corp., ConocoPhillips and ChevronTexaco _ to develop two major offshore oil fields, Nigerian officials said.

One of the joint-operating agreements signed Monday gives a controlling 55 percent stake of the first field to Exxon Mobil with unspecified minority stakes going to ChevronTexaco and the state-owned Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, the state firm said in a statement.

The second deal gives ConocoPhillips a 50 percent stake of the other bloc while ChevronTexaco receives a 30 percent stake and Nigeria National Petroleum gains a 20 percent stake

In recent years, foreign oil companies in Nigeria have sought to take their operations offshore in a bid to avert the frequent armed hostage-takings, sabotage and other violent attacks by community activists and thugs that have plagued the oil-rich, but impoverished Niger Delta.

Nigeria is the world's sixth-largest oil exporter and accounts for 10 percent of U.S. imports.


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