Royal Dutch Shell's Nigeria operation is working on selling three onshore oil blocks, the latest move to divest some of its onshore assets, a spokesman said.
Shell has been winding down some of its onshore operations, which are plagued with problems such as militancy and rampant oil theft, as it increasingly focuses on offshore and deepwater drilling. Nigeria's government, which is trying to increase ownership of oil blocks by local companies, has encouraged such deals.
"SPDC (Shell Petroleum Development Corporation) is working towards the potential divestment of OMLs 30, 34 and 40," spokesman Tony Okonedo said by telephone. He declined to comment on any negotiations or whether an offer had already been made on them. The sales follow similar divestments over the past two years.
Last year, Shell sold its 30 percent stake in Nigerian onshore oil block OML 42 to local consortium Neconde Energy, which includes Nestoil Group, Aries E&P Company Limited, VP Global and Poland's Kulczyk Oil Ventures, for $390 million.
The Anglo-Dutch major also divested its 30 percent stake in block OML 26 to First Hydrocarbon Nigeria (FHN), which is part-owned by Afren, for $98 million in the same year. In 2010, it assigned three blocks, OML 4, 38 and 41, to Seplat Petroleum, Okonedo said.