BP has struck a key victory in its battle to share the cost of the Gulf of Mexico oil spill.
Japanese trading house Mitsui’s exploration unit – which owned 10 percent of the oil well that exploded – has agreed to pay 772 million euros towards the clean-up bill and contribute to billions in fines.
That puts pressure on another shareholder Anadarko Petroleum to pay some of the costs.
Up till now Mitsui’s exploration unit MOEX had said it should not have to pay because BP’s negligence exempted it from this obligation.
“This is the first recognition by one of the partners that actually…blame is shared and should be shared and therefore the costs should be shared as well,” Societe Generale analyst Irene Himona said.
“It is very significant because clearly now it means that BP can try and ensure that everybody else who is involved will also meet their obligations,” she added.
BP has estimated the cost of capping the well, cleaning up the damage from America’s largest ever offshore oil spill and compensating those affected will be over 29 billion euros.