BHP Billiton enters US shale gas market with $4.75bn deal

22 February 2011 13:50  [Source: ICIS news]

TORONTO (ICIS)--BHP Billiton has agreed to acquire Chesapeake Energy’s interests in the Fayetteville shale gas project in Arkansas for $4.75bn (€3.52bn), marking its entry into the US shale gas business, the Anglo-Australian mining and energy major said on Tuesday.

Chesapeake's Fayetteville shale assets included about 487,000 acres of leasehold and producing natural gas properties. These assets currently produced more than 400m cubic feet of gas per day, BHP said.

“The operated position we are obtaining will immediately make BHP Billiton a major North American shale gas producer,” said Michael Yeager, CEO of the company's petroleum business.

The rise of shale gas, and its associated natural gas liquids, has made the US a more attractive location for chemical production.

 ($1 = €0.74)

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By: Stefan Baumgarten
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