Athabasca Sells Assets to Murphy Oil in Joint Venture Pact

Athabasca Oil Corp. is selling fossil fuel assets to Murphy Oil Corp. for C$475 million ($337 million) as part of a joint venture to develop properties in western Canada.

Murphy Oil will buy a 30 percent interest in the Greater Placid assets in the Montney formation and will provide funding to develop shale oil reserves in the Duvernay, the company said in a statement. Murphy will help Athabasca develop the assets.

“The transaction materially progresses Athabasca’s strategic goal of transitioning the Duvernay play to commercial development over the mid term,” Athabasca Chief Executive Officer Rob Broen said in the statement.

Athabasca has been entering into joint venture agreements in the past few years to help the company develop expensive crude assets in Alberta and British Columbia. The transaction will allow Athabasca to reduce its debt, the company said.

Separately, Enbridge Inc. said it would buy Murphy Oil’s Tupper Main and Tupper West natural gas plants and associated pipelines in northeastern B.C. for C$538 million. Enbridge already operates a gas processing facility in the area.

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