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OMV says it is trying to sell Yemen assets as part of oil divestment

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OMV says it is trying to sell Yemen assets as part of oil divestment


OMV only sizeable international oil company still in Yemen

Main export grade is light sweet Masila

Production 1.1 mil barrels in 2021

  • Author
  • Claudia Carpenter
  • Editor
  • Jonathan Fox
  • Commodity
  • Natural Gas Oil

Austria's OMV is in the process of selling its crude and NGL assets in war-torn Yemen because it is trying to reduce its activities in the oil business.

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"We can confirm that we are in a sales process of our Yemen business," the company told S&P Global Commodity Insights in response to a question. "The intended divestment is based on OMV's strategy of reducing the share of oil in the portfolio."

Vienna-based OMV is the only sizeable international oil company still operating in Yemen Its oil and NGL production fell 15% in 2021 to 1.1 million barrels, according to its 2021 annual report.

"While Yemen's security situation continuously poses significant challenges, OMV was able to complete the workover campaign in Block S2 and commission two power generation units for the central processing facility in Q4/21," it said.

Yemen, at the southern end of the Arabian Peninsula, sits on proved hydrocarbon reserves of some 3 billion barrels of crude and 17 Tcf of gas, according to the US Energy Information Administration.

Its main crude export grade is light sweet Masila, which has a sulfur content of 0.51% and an API gravity of 34.10, and exports smaller volumes of extra light sweet Marib Light.

Recent exports have been very changeable, as high as 88,000 b/d in February 2021 and falling to 15,000 b/d in May before rebounding this month, according to data analytics firm Kpler.

Yemen has never been a major oil producer, particularly relative to its Arab and Persian neighbors, but it pumped more than 400,000 b/d in the early 2000s, bringing much needed revenue to the region's poorest economy. Since 2015, however, output has plummeted to below 100,000 b/d and will average about 40,000 b/d for the rest of this year, according to S&P Global.