May 28, 2015 / 2:16 AM / 2 years ago

S.Korea's SK Innovation wants to expand U.S. shale investment

SEOUL, May 28 (Reuters) - South Korea’s SK Innovation Co Ltd , which owns the country’s biggest refiner SK Energy Co Ltd, said it aims to raise investment in U.S. shale fields and increase partnerships with major crude producers to stabilise energy supplies.

The firm said in a statement on Thursday it wanted to expand its shale gas fields in Oklahoma and Texas, which it acquired last year, into nearby areas. It also aims to boost competitiveness by diversifying crude sources and cutting import costs.

SK Innovation suffered its first loss in decades in the fourth quarter of 2014, though better margins over January to March amid weak global oil prices helped it swing back to a profit of 321.2 billion Korean won ($300.61 million).

The statement, quoting its chief executive and president Chung Chul-khil, also said that for its troubled chemical business its growth strategy would focus on the Chinese market.

The company said it hoped the plans would triple its domestic stock market value to 30 trillion Korean won ($27.09 billion) by 2018. ($1 = 1,107.3000 won) (Reporting by Meeyoung Cho; Editing by Ed Davies)

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