Efforts by Tullow Oil Plc to sell a stake of business in Uganda to Total E&P and CNOOC has flopped, the British oil firm confirmed Thursday morning.
This follows the expiry of the Sale and Purchase Agreements (SPAs) it had procured with the government of Uganda and the JV partners. The SPA expired end of Thursday 29 August 2019.
“Tullow has been unable to secure a further extension of the SPAs with its Joint Venture Partners, despite previous extensions to the SPAs having been agreed by all parties,” the oil firm said in a statement.
“The termination of this transaction is a result of being unable to agree all aspects of the tax treatment of the transaction with the Government of Uganda which was a condition to completing the SPAs.
“While Tullow’s capital gains tax position had been agreed as per the Group’s disclosure in its 2018 Full Year Results, the Ugandan Revenue Authority and the Joint Venture Partners could not agree on the availability of tax relief for the consideration to be paid by Total and CNOOC as buyers.
Tullow said it will now initiate a new sales process to reduce its 33.33% Operated stake in the Lake Albert project which has over 1.5 billion barrels of discovered recoverable resources and is expected to produce over 230,000 bopd at peak production.
The Joint Venture Partners had been targeting a Final Investment Decision for the Uganda development by the end of 2019, but the termination of this transaction is likely to lead to further delay.
Tullow chief executive officer Paul Mcdade said Tullow had worked tirelessly over the last two and a half years to complete this farm down which was structured to re-invest the proceeds in Uganda.
“Whilst this is a very attractive low-cost development project, we remain committed to reducing our operated equity stake. It is disappointing to report this news at a time when we are making so much progress elsewhere towards the growth of the Group with our recent oil discovery in Guyana and the first export of oil from Kenya.”