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CNPC plans third bid for YPF

CHINA National Petroleum Corp, the country's largest oil company, plans to revive a US$17-billion bid for the Argentinian unit of Spanish oil major Repsol-YPF, the South China Morning Post reported yesterday.

CNPC, the parent of Asia's top oil and gas producer PetroChina, may offer to buy up to three-quarters of YPF, the newspaper reported, adding that top offshore oil and gas producer CNOOC was also eyeing a 25-percent stake.

However, the newspaper quoted a Repsol spokesman as saying: "We receive lots of proposals, ideas and suggestions from companies in China, India and Russia, but we haven't had a firm offer or taken any decision on selling YPF."

CNPC and CNOOC were not available for comment.

If the deal succeeds, it would be the latest in a string of foreign takeovers by China's oil majors, including a US$7.2-billion bid for Swiss oil explorer Addax Petroleum by Sinopec Group.

In 2007, CNPC twice failed to buy YPF's Latin American assets for commercial reasons, the report added.

Goldman Sachs is advising YPF on the sale, while Morgan Stanley and JPMorgan are advising CNPC and CNOOC respectively.


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