, ACCRA, Mar 26 – Talks between authorities in Ghana and US oil firm Kosmos over the sale of its stake in Jubilee oil field are ongoing with expectations that a compromise will be reached, the deputy energy minister said Friday.
"We have been engaged in various mutual discussions with Kosmos and we expect to reach a compromise that would be beneficial to the two parties," Emmanuel Armah-Kofi Buah, told AFP.
A Kosmos company official in Ghana, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told AFP on Tuesday that the private oil firm had rescinded a decision to sell its shares in the oil field.
But Kosmos spokesman in Dallas, Jim McCarthy, denied such a decision was taken.
"Kosmos has made no such decision," McCarthy told AFP, dismissing the information as "entirely wrong".
Asked whether Kosmos has formally approached the government with plans to shelve the disposal of its stake, the minister said: "As far as I know, government has not received any proposal or approach from Kosmos in this direction.
"We are still seriously having mutual discussions," Armah-Kofi Buah added.
He did not disclose details or give any indications on when an agreement might be reached between the two parties.
The US company had said last year it wanted to sell its stakes in the West Cape Three Points and adjacent Deepwater Tano blocs in the Jubilee field, one of west Africa\’s largest oil finds in the past decade.
With more than a billion barrels in reserves, the first barrels of crude are expected from the field in the last quarter of the year.
Kosmos has a 30.875 percent interest in the West Cape Three Points Block and a 18 percent stake in Deepwater Tano Block in the Gulf of Guinea.
Kosmos Energy\’s attempt to sell its stake to Exxon Mobil was blocked after the state-owned Ghana National Petroleum Corporation raised legal issues with the deal, saying it constituted a breach of an earlier agreement.
This prompted GNPC to offer to buy the stake.