BP sells stakes in North Sea assets to Abu Dhabi National Energy for $1.06 bn

British oil giant BP Plc yesterday sold its stakes in several North Sea oil and gas fields to state-owned Abu Dhabi National Energy (Taqa) for $1.06 billion (£663 million).

The  sale brings BP within $1 billion of its $38 billion divestment target and helps the London-based company cover billions of dollars in costs from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

Taqa will acquire the BP-operated 70-per cent stake in the Harding field, 37.03 per cent in Maclure and 88.7 per cent in the Devenick field located in the central North Sea.

Taqa will also acquire BP's non-operated interests in the Brae fields complex and the Braemar field.

Carl Sheldon, CEO of Taqa, said that the deal would add 21,000 barrels of oil equivalent a day to its output and add 91 million barrels to its reserve base, making it ''a leading operator in the UK North Sea.''

"This transaction is in line with BP's strategy to focus on a smaller number of higher-value assets with long-term growth potential and to continue the simplification of our portfolio with a further reduction of operated infrastructure and wells," Bob Dudley, CEO of BP.