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CNOOC: No Plan to Sweeten Unocal Bid

A spokesperson for China National Offshore Oil Company Ltd. (CNOOC) said in Beijing on Thursday that so far it has no plan to modify its bid for US-based Unocal, contradicting reports in that day's foreign media.


"So far, CNOOC's US$67 per share all cash offer has not changed and remains in effect," he said, "With the consideration of our shareholders' interests in mind, we will not easily change the bid."


According to some media reports yesterday, CNOOC was considering sweetening its bid with a pledge to sell all of Unocal's American assets, including valuable drilling projects in the Gulf of Mexico, to reduce opposition from US lawmakers.


"There have been many guesses about whether CNOOC will sweeten its bid for Unocal, but we will not comment further on them," said the spokesperson.


Unocal's board said late on Tuesday that it is considering a revised offer from Chevron worth over US$17 billion in cash and stock, less than CNOOC's US$18.5 billion all-cash bid.


In a brief statement, Unocal and Chevron jointly urged Unocal shareholders to accept the package at a vote scheduled for August 10, and the board will not recommend CNOOC's plan.


"We have fully negotiated a merger agreement and other transaction documents reflecting this proposal with Unocal which we believe to be acceptable to them," the spokesperson told Xinhua News Agency on Wednesday.


"We regret that they have not yet embraced our offer. We will continue to follow developments closely," he said.


(Xinhua News Agency July 29, 2005)



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