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Oil majors' renewable drive pushes up price tags on assets - SSE boss

LONDON, Sept 16 (Reuters) - Plans by European oil companies to increase their renewable power capacity are driving up the price tags on renewable businesses and projects, the CEO of British renewables and network company SSE, told Reuters.

BP, Shell and Total have all announced renewable expansion plans this year to reduce their reliance on fossil fuels and meet internal climate targets. Analysts say much of the growth will need to come through acquisitions.

“I’m delighted to see some of these companies coming in and paying substantial prices for assets. That will help in terms of pushing up the prices of assets we are selling,” SSE’s Alistair Phillips-Davies said in an interview.

BP last week agreed to pay $1.1 billion for 50% stakes in two U.S. offshore wind developments from Norway’s Equinor

SSE, which is seeking to divest around 2 billion pounds ($2.6 billion) of assets, has said it would sell at least a 10% stake in its Dogger Bank offshore wind project being developed off the British coast with Norway’s Equinor.

SSE also earlier this year sold a 51% stake in its Seagreen 1 British offshore wind farm project to France’s Total.

“Generally, seeing oil companies come in with their experience of offshore is good news for the industry. Although it will make the market more competitive it will also bring new focus and new technology and innovation,” Phillips-Davies said. ($1 = 0.7703 pounds) (Reporting By Susanna Twidale. Editing by Jane Merriman)

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