BP Says Bid to Acquire Stake in Israel's NewMed on Track

Leviathan platform offshore Israel - File photo: Noble Energy
Leviathan platform offshore Israel - File photo: Noble Energy

BP and Abu Dhabi National Oil Co's (ADNOC) $2 billion bid to acquire a 50% stake in Israeli gas producer NewMed Energy remains on track, a BP executive has told investors.

BP remained "very optimistic" about the deal despite the escalation of violence between Israel and militants in the Gaza Strip in recent days, BP's head of gas and low-carbon energy Anja-Isabel Dotzenrath told investors at a BP strategy day in Denver, Colorado on Tuesday, according to sources present at the meeting.

 The proposed acquisition by ADNOC and BP was seen as a sign of the strengthening economic links between Israel and the United Arab Emirates after the two countries agreed to normalize ties in 2020.

NewMed is the largest shareholder in Israel's giant Leviathan offshore gas field with a 45.3% stake. Its operator Chevron, holds a 39.7% stake while Ratio holds the remaining 15%.

The deal was cast into doubt after an independent panel appointed by NewMed last month recommended raising the asking price by more than 10%.

"Despite the recent geopolitical events and the request for a higher price from the panel reviewing the proposed acquisition price, BP continues to highlight the Newmed deal as an example of innovative upstream partnership and confirms the attractiveness of the assets and the broader region," Jefferies analyst Giacomo Romeo said in a note after the meeting.

A source close to ADNOC said the company "remained committed to the deal and continues to see value in it."

The proposed acquisition by ADNOC and BP was seen as a sign of the strengthening economic links between Israel and the United Arab Emirates after the two countries agreed to normalize ties in 2020.

NewMed is the largest shareholder in Israel's giant Leviathan offshore gas field with a 45.3% stake. Its operator Chevron holds a 39.7% stake while Ratio holds the remaining 15%.

The deal was cast into doubt after an independent panel appointed by NewMed last month recommended raising the asking price by more than 10%.

"Despite the recent geopolitical events and the request for a higher price from the panel reviewing the proposed acquisition price, BP continues to highlight the Newmed deal as an example of innovative upstream partnership and confirms the attractiveness of the assets and the broader region," Jefferies analyst Giacomo Romeo said in a note after the meeting.

A source close to ADNOC said the company "remained committed to the deal and continues to see value in it."


(Reporting by Ron Bousso/Reuters)

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