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Algeria is open to 'compromise' on Total's Anadarko deal: energy minister

Tindouf, Algeria — Algeria is open to a "good compromise" on a plan for France's Total to buy Anadarko's Algerian assets, the country's energy minister said Monday.

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"We have seen the information on this transaction," energy minister Mohamed Arkab told reporters in Tindouf in western Algeria. Sonatrach, which controls Algerian energy assets, "will seek a good compromise that is in the interest of the country."

Total said in early May it reached an agreement to buy Anadarko's African oil and gas assets from Occidental Petroleum for $8.8 billion, pending Occidental's successful acquisition of Anadarko. Chevron dropped out of the bidding for Anadarko, clearing the way for Occidental's $57 billion offer for the US shale producer whose African assets in Algeria, Ghana, Mozambique and South Africa are 70% natural gas.

Total didn't respond to requests for comments about the deal going through. Reuters reported on Sunday that Arkab said Algeria would block the acquisition. Anadarko owns 24.5% of fields in the Berkine basin that represented gross production of 320,000 boe/d in 2018, according to Total. Total already owns 12.25% of the Hassine Berkine, Ourhoud and El Merk fields.Total has said it expected the deal to close in 2020.

-- Illies Sahar,

-- Edited by Claudia Carpenter,