Leadership & Strategy
Norinco in competition with Hengli Group for stake in Abu Dhabi Oil
May 20, 2020
A 4% stake in Abu Dhabi National Oil Corporation (Adnoc) is up for sale as the Chinese government continues its campaign to mitigate private sector debt
CEFC China Energy have been selling debt-laden assets over the past few months in line with the aims of the Chinese government, Reuters said, including stakes in oil and gas firms in Abu Dhabi and Chad.
Frontrunners for the 4% stake are China North Industries Group Corporation (Norinco) and the Hengli Group, owned by the wealthiest man in Jiangsu, the South China Morning Post (SCMP) reported on 5 September.
CEFC bought the stake in the giant onshore field for US$900mn in February 2017, according to Reuters.
Having conducted due diligence on the stake, Citic Group have withdrawn from making an offer despite having made offers for CEFC’s Czech assets.
State-owned Norinco is one of the largest arms dealers in the world, and SCMP said its general manager was in Abu Dhabi in April to discuss military cooperation with the emirates’ Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed bin Sultan al-Nahyan.
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Hengli Group, privately owned by Chen Jianhua, is currently building a new petrochemical plant in Dalian with the aim of processing 20mn tonnes of crude oil annually.
SCMP reported that “the firm in April received state approval to import 400,000 barrels per day of crude oil, or 20 million tonnes a year – the largest quota ever given to a private refiner in China”.
“A stake in Abu Dhabi National Oil could entitle Hengli to more than 3.2 million tonnes of crude oil a year at the current level of production – and the size could exceed 4 million tonnes a year if that output increases”, it added.