PT Pertamina is one step closer to acquiring a 32 percent stake in Petrodelta, SA after the Indonesian state-owned oil and gas company received the green light from the Venezuelan company to go ahead with its acquisition plan.
Eulogio Del Pino, vice president of exploration and production at Petrodelta’s parent company, state-owned Petroleos de Venezuela, SA (PDVSA), said the acquisition plan “looked positive” to both Petrodelta and Pertamina.
Pertamina plans to acquire a 32 percent stake in Petrodelta from Houston-based Harvest Natural Resources Inc. Harvest agreed in June to sell the stake to Pertamina for US$725 million. The companies were scheduled to hold meetings this week to study progress in governmental approvals and have the right to terminate the purchase agreement at that time.
Harvest chief executive officer James Edmiston said on June 27 that Venezuela and PDVSA “have been very supportive” of his firm.
According to Pertamina spokesperson Ali Mundakir, the company had not yet received Petrodelta’s official statement about the latest developments in the deal.
He said the deal needed approval from several parties in order to be realised.
“It [the deal] needs approval from Petrodelta’s and Pertamina’s shareholders, as well as both the Venezuelan and the Indonesian government as well as from Harvest’s shareholders,” he told The Jakarta Post over the phone on Wednesday.
He said Pertamina was still on track to acquire a stake in Petrodelta but he emphasized that the end result would depend on the ongoing negotiations. “I don’t have any updates or decisions on our company’s effort to acquire Petrodelta shares, but I assure you that we will keep you informed if there are any developments,” he said.
As reported earlier, Pertamina president director Karen Agustiawan said that the current political situation in Venezuela, which is slated to hold general elections in October, was included in her considerations.
Venezuela has been nationalising its oil assets under the leadership of President Hugo Chavez as a move to boost control over its oil industry. However, the move has kept investors at arms-length from the South American OPEC member and left crude production stagnant.
Venezuela nationalised most of Harvest’s operation in 2007. Harvest also has exploration programmes in Oman, Indonesia, Gabon, China and the United States.
Petrodelta’s six fields hold gross proven reserves of 195 million barrels of oil and 235 billion cubic feet of gas, according to Harvest’s website.