April 19, 2017 / 4:26 PM / 2 years ago

UAE'S TAQA might sell some North American oil and gas assets - COO

ABU DHABI, April 19 (Reuters) - Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (TAQA) might sell some of its oil and gas interests in North America to raise capital for its core business, its chief operating officer told Reuters on Wednesday.

The loss-making company, 75 percent-owned by the Abu Dhabi government, has been hit by low oil prices.

“It is possible we may look to dispose of some oil and gas properties in the U.S and ... Canada,” Saeed Hamad al Dhaheri said, without naming specific assets but excluding its operations in Central Alberta.

TAQA’s North American oil and gas business is based in Calgary with some of its properties in its South Area extending into Montana, North Dakota and Wyoming in the United States.

In the United States TAQA also has a gas-fired power station in New Jersey and a wind farm in Minnesota.

“In Canada, we have identified Central Alberta as a geographic region which we want to further invest in,” he said, adding that certain assets that fall outside central Alberta might be sold.

TAQA, which made a loss of 18.55 billion dirhams ($5.1 billion) in 2016, has cut 1,400 jobs since 2014 and currently the company’s headcount stands at 2,200, he said.

Earlier this month TAQA said that the Abu Dhabi Water & Electricity Authority (Adwea) raised its stake to 74 percent from 52.38 percent after granting TAQA land valued at 18.7 billion dirhams that could potentially offset accumulated losses.

At the company’s annual general meeting on Wednesday, TAQA’s chairman Saeed Mubarak al-Hajeri told shareholders that TAQA has no plans to sell the land.

Shareholders also voted for three new board members who will join the four existing members of the company’s board. (Reporting By Stanley Carvalho; Editing by Greg Mahlich)

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