China National Petroleum Corp. (CNPC), the country's largest oil company, plans to revive a $17 billion bid for the Argentinian unit of Spanish oil major Repsol-YPF, the South China Morning Post reported on Thursday, citing sources.
CNPC, the parent of Asian top oil and gas producer PetroChina, may offer to buy up to three-quarters of YPF, the newspaper reported, adding that top offshore oil and gas producer CNOOC was also eyeing a 25 percent stake.
However, the newspaper cited a Repsol spokesman as saying: We receive lots of proposals, ideas and suggestions from companies in China, India and Russia, but we haven't had a firm offer or taken any decision on selling YPF.
Representatives from CNPC and CNOOC were not available for comment when contacted by Reuters.
If the deal succeeds, it would mark the latest in a recent string of foreign takeovers by China's oil majors, including a $7.2 billion bid for Swiss oil explorer Addax Petroleum by Sinopec Group.
The newspaper report cited analysts as saying it was likely that the new offer by CNPC would face stiff political opposition in the South American nation.
CNPC failed twice in 2007 to buy all of YPF's Latin American assets because of commercial reasons, the report added.
Goldman Sachs is advising YPF on the sale, while Morgan Stanley and JP Morgan are advising CNPC and CNOOC respectively.
(Reporting by Sui-Lee Wee, Editing by Chris Lewis)