(By Balachander) BP Plc (NYSE: BP) has agreed to sell its interest in the Sean gas field in the UK North Sea to SSE Plc for $288 million in cash.
U.K.-based BP, the oil and gas giant, said the divestment was a part of its strategy to market its stakes in non-operated North Sea assets.
The sale comprises BP's non-operated 50 percent stake in Sean gas field, which is operated by Shell.
BP's current net production from Sean is around 18,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day.
"The divestment of BP's interest in the non-core, non-operated Sean field is consistent with our strategy of focusing on high value assets with long term growth potential," said Trevor Garlick, regional president of BP North Sea.
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Meanwhile, SSE - formerly Scottish and Southern Energy Plc - expects total net proven and probable (2P) reserves to be roughly 1.7 billion therms over the life of the field.
In the last two weeks BP has closed the sale of its non-operating stakes in the Alba and Britannia fields to Mitsui and the Draugen field in Norway to Shell.
BP's annual North Sea production averages around 200,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day and the company has over three billion barrels of estimated proven and contingent resource available in the region.
"We have made clear that SSE is proactively seeking new opportunities to increase our presence in upstream gas sector where assets can be acquired for a fair price, and that is exactly what this deal represents," said David Franklin, SSE's Managing Director Energy Portfolio Management.
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The deal is expected to be completed during the first half of 2013.
U.S.-listed shares of BP closed at $41.39 on Friday.