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Acquisition   60% stake in Athabasca

Royal Dutch Shell to sell oil sands interests for $7.25bn

Royal Dutch ShellRoyal Dutch Shell is to sell its oil sands interests in Canada and reduce its share in the Athabasca oil sands project to 10% from 60% for a total of $7.25 billion.

Shell will remain the operator of Athabasca's Scotford upgrader and the Quest carbon capture and storage project so it can focus on its Canadian downstream business and leverage proprietary technology.

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As part of the deal Royal Dutch Shell will sell its 60% stake in Athabasca and its Peace River Complex asset, which includes undeveloped oil sands leases in Alberta, to a subsidiary of Canadian Natural Resources, which will be the operator of the Athabasca's upstream mining assets, for about $8.5bn, comprised of $5.4bn in cash and around 98m Canadian Natural shares worth $3.1bn.

Shell, along with Canadian Natural will also jointly buy Marathon Oil Canada, which holds a 20% stake in Athabasca, from an affiliate of Marathon Oil Corporation for $1.25bn each.

The sale, which is expected to close mid-2017 and is subject to regulatory approval also includes intellectual property agreements valued at up to $285m and a long-term supply agreement for the Scotford refinery, which could potentially allow for additional cost reductions for Shell.




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