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SDX says talks for it to acquire BP Egypt assets end with no deal

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LONDON (Reuters) – North African-focused oil and gas company SDX Energy <SDX.L> said on Thursday that talks to buy some of BP’s <BP.L> Egyptian assets have been abandoned.

Reuters reported earlier in the year, citing banking sources, that BP is seeking buyers for its stake in a 50-year-old oil and gas business in Egypt, then estimated to be worth around $500 million (£382 million).

“Discussions regarding its proposed acquisition of a significant package of assets in Egypt from BP have been terminated by mutual agreement,” SDX said in a statement, without giving details on why the talks were ended.

It was not clear which assets SDX was in talks with BP over. SDX, whose shares were suspended from trading on London’s AIM exchange when it confirmed on Sept. 20 it was in talks with BP, had said the acquisition would constitute a reverse takeover.

SDX shares started trading again on Thursday and were down around 4.3 percent at 0729 GMT.

“Clearly it’s disappointing that this transaction has not materialized,” SDX Chief Executive Paul Welch said in the statement.

“It was an exciting opportunity but… we are screening potential deals all of the time and we know that there will be others that will serve to fast track our stated goal to be a North Africa-focused (exploration and production firm) of scale.”

BP officials had no immediate comment.

(Reporting By Shadia Nasralla; editing by Emelia Sithole-Matarise)

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