It has been a productive first 100 days for new Occidental Petroleum Chairman Ray Irani. Eager to sell off assets to whittle down Oxy's debt by $3 billion, Irani struck two deals. The company will sell a half-interest in most of its natural-gas liquids business to Hicks Muse, an investment firm, for $691 million. And it will sell its North Sea oil and gas fields to the French oil giant Elf Aquitaine for $1.4 billion. Other assets said to be still for sale: Oxy's 51% stake in IBP, the beef and pork processor, and a Chinese coal mining company.
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