Jurisdiction - China
China – Herbert Smith Advises CNOOC On 25% Participating Interest In Shell’s Offshore Exploration Blocks In Gabon.


22 August, 2012
Herbert Smith has recently advised China National Offshore Oil Corporation ("CNOOC") on its acquisition of a 25% participating interest of Shell's offshore exploration blocks BC9 and BCD10 in Gabon (“Transaction”), Africa. CNOOC will reimburse Shell for 25% of certain part of the exploration costs and carry part of the future exploration costs. Shell will remain operator with a 75% participating interest. The Transaction was announced on 25 July 2012 and is subject to government approval.
This Transaction is part of the greater cooperation between CNOOC and Shell. It was announced on the same day as the two companies signed a production sharing contract to jointly explore Blocks 62/02 and 62/17 in Yinggehai Basin.
CNOOC is the largest producer of offshore crude oil and natural gas in China and is also one of the largest independent oil and gas exploration and production companies in the world in terms of reserves and production.
In 2011, Herbert Smith advised CNOOC on its acquisition of a 33% interest in exploration areas 1, 2 and 3A in Uganda from Tullow Oil.  
The Herbert Smith team was led by energy partners Hilary Lau and Bertrand Montembault. They were supported by senior associate Phoebe Yuen, associates Hao Su, Maïa Melyon and Anna Giudice. 
Hilary Lau commented:
"We are delighted to have had the opportunity to work with CNOOC again on another upstream oil & gas deal with an international oil major in Africa. It reinforces our status as the preferred legal adviser for African oil and gas transactions."
For further information, please contact:
Wendy Kam, Hebert Smith


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