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China seeks N. American energy reserves, know-how
CNOOC's $15 billion Canadian energy acquisition shows appetite for resource assets undaunted
By The Associated Press

SHANGHAI (AP) Offshore Chinese energy giant CNOOC's $15 billion offer for Canadian oil and gas producer Nexen Inc. is strategically calibrated to win regulatory approval unlike its failed 2005 attempt to buy Unocal.

The deal announced Monday shows China's appetite for overseas energy assets remains as strong as ever despite its current economic slowdown.

Weaker oil prices and a resolve to capture technologies China needs to unlock its own sizable but hard to extract reserves are powerful incentives for its energy companies to snap up foreign producers.

Back in 2005, protests that the sale of Unocal might jeopardize U.S. national security prompted CNOOC Ltd. to withdraw its $18.5 billion bid.

This time, CNOOC is promising to protect jobs and boost investment to head off any protests.

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