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Statoil has no "sacred cows" in terms of divesting

The Norwegian oil giant has been divesting on a large scale in recent years, and according to CEO Helge Lund the company is not done yet.

Photo: Ivar Langvik - Statoil

Norwegian oil giant Statoil presented a disappointing interim report last week in which the company suffered a million-dollar operating loss.

Yet the company still achieved a bigger profit than expected, at USD 1.93 billion, a result partially attributable to divestments worth USD 577.8 million in Shah Deniz and the South Caucasus pipeline.

And according to CEO Helge Lund, Statoil is not done trimming its business.

"I believe that buying and selling assets is part of the value creation in this business, and we're constantly working to build a better portfolio," he tells E24.

The Norwegian news media has calculated that Statoil since 2009 has divested assets for around USD 17.33 billion, and has reaped gains of USD 9.63 billion from these divestments. Statoil has sold assets related to tank stations, though also ownership stakes in oil licenses.

The CEO declines to name new specific divestments, though he adds:

"This is something we're continuously evaluating, and I'm not going to point to any specific area. But there are no sacred cows among the company's owned assets," Helge Lund tells E24.

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