Eni Considers Pakistan Exit After 20 Years

Italy’s Eni SpA is weighing a sale of its energy exploration and production assets in Pakistan after operating in the country for about 20 years, people with knowledge of the matter said.

Eni is working with a financial adviser to gauge interest in the portfolio, said the people who asked not to be identified as the information isn’t public.

The disposal includes Eni’s producing assets in Bhit, Badhra and Kadanwari, as well as its processing facilities and several non-operating assets. It includes four exploration leases and eight development and production leases.

As of 2019, Eni produces 37 billion cubic feet of natural gas annually in Pakistan, according to its website. The company in 2019 opened a photovoltaic plant there, which will produce about 20 gigawatt hours per year, the website shows.

Shares of Eni rose 0.4% in Milan trading Friday, giving the company a market value of 32 billion euros ($36 billion). Deliberations are at an early stage, and the company could decide against a transaction, the people said.

A representative for Eni declined to comment.

The proposed sale would mark Eni’s exit from Pakistan as the South Asian nation’s domestic gas production has plateaued in recent years. It is also joining other energy giants in selling assets in the country. In 2018, OMV AG sold its upstream companies in the country to Hong Kong-based United Energy Group Ltd. for 158 million euros.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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