Conoco Transfers Peru Oil Assets to Gran Tierra

ConocoPhillips (COP) is pulling out of two exploration areas in the Peruvian Amazon jungle as it divests assets to focus on new European and U.S. ventures.

Conoco will transfer its 45 percent stake in Blocks 123 and 129 to Calgary-based Gran Tierra Energy Inc. (GTE), it said in a statement today. The transfer won’t involve a financial transaction, Davy Kong, a spokesman for Houston-based Conoco, said in a telephone interview.

“It was a difficult decision to leave these blocks,” Larry Archibald, vice president for exploration, said in the statement. “We reached this decision as part of the company’s broader strategic effort to re-evaluate our investments and asset portfolio.”

Conoco is divesting assets with high-capital needs to focus on new ventures, Chief Executive Officer Ryan Lance said last month. The company may use asset sales to fund spending as it invests $2.5 billion in Texas’s Eagle Ford shale formation and $2.2 billion in new European projects this year, he said.

Conoco joins Calgary-based Talisman Energy Inc. (TLM) and Spain’s Repsol SA, which are also looking to shed their Peruvian operations. Petroleo Brasileiro SA (PETR4) said Sept. 5 it’s reviewing its investments in a natural gas block.

Conoco rose 0.3 percent to $57.58 at the close in New York.

To contact the reporter on this story: Alex Emery in Lima at aemery1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Attwood at jattwood3@bloomberg.net

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