French energy company Total says it will not be investing in the US shale oil industry because of high costs and not enough human resources to tackle a new operation. Sipa Press photo.
BP, Shell, Equinor have stakes in US shale industry
The chief executive of French energy group Total said on Monday that his multi-national company will not invest in the US shale industry.
Patrick Pouyanne made the comment after he was asked about BP’s $10.5 billion purchase of US shale assets from BHP Billiton in July.
“It’s first quite expensive, second we don’t have the human resources. BP had the human resources, BP had already a position, so I can understand their move but it’s not my case,” Reuters reports Pouyanne said on the sidelines of an oil conference.
BHP had been pressured by investors, led by US hedge fund Elliott Management, to sell its shale assets in the United States.
According to Reuters, BP’s purchase of about half a million producing acres marks a turning point for the company since the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. The company is still paying off over $65 billion in penalties and clean-up costs.
BP joins Shell and Equinor in US shale while Total and Italy’s Eni have avoided the play.
Pioneer Natural Resources Chairman Scott Sheffield was optimistic when asked about European oil and gas companies investing in US shale.
“Eventually I think more and more majors will get there, (because) it’s the fastest-growing region for the next 10 years in the world. And so if you’re not in the Permian … then you’d better find growth somewhere else,” Sheffield told Reuters.