February 26, 2018 / 2:53 PM / 7 months ago

Algeria's Sonatrach to strengthen ties with BP, Statoil

ALGIERS (Reuters) - Algeria’s oil and gas company Sonatrach signed a memorandum of understanding on Monday with Norway’s Statoil STL.OL and Britain’s BP (BP.L) to strengthen cooperation particularly in upstream oil exploration, a joint statement said.

FILE PHOTO - An employee stands near the headquarter of the state energy company Sonatrach in Algiers, Algeria june 26, 2016.Reuters/Ramzi Boudia

The companies gave no further details.

It is the latest sign of Sonatrach seeking to deepen ties with oil majors since Abdelmoumen Ould Kaddour took over as chief executive 10 months ago. He has resolved several disputes with foreign firms including Italy’s Eni (ENI.MI), France’s Total (TOTF.PA) and Italy’s Saipem (SPMI.MI).

The move aims to boost Sonatrach’s attractiveness to secure investment and technology to raise stagnant output in both oil and gas, which make up 97 percent of state income.

BP and Statoil are already present in Algeria, working with Sonatrach at the Tiguentourine gas plant in the region of In Amenas.

(This version of the story corrects to show Saipem is an Italian firm.)

Reporting by Lamine Chikhi; Editing by Ulf Laessing and David Evans

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