Exxon Mobil Corp is considering selling its majority stake in Italy's main regasification terminal as part of a wider strategy to divest from non-core assets, the company said in a statement on Wednesday.
The Rovigo liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal is owned by Exxon's subsidiary ExxonMobil Italiana Gas (70.7%), QatarEnergy subsidiary Qatar Terminal Company Limited (22%) and Snam Spa SRG.MI (7.3%).
Snam, an Italian gas grid operator, has the first right of refusal should a partner decide to divest.
Exxon said that while it was verifying market interest, it had not made a decision about a potential sale and has not identified a buyer at this early stage.
"Tests like this are consistent with our focused investment strategy, highlighting our willingness to divest non-core assets to those who can derive greater value," Exxon spokesperson Meghan Macdonald said.
The offshore terminal, managed by Italy's Terminale GNL Adriatico, is located in the northern Adriatic Sea, about 15 km off Porto Viro in the Veneto region.
The facility has recently had its regasification capacity expanded to 9 billion cubic meters of natural gas per year. Any transaction would not impact Exxon's imports of LNG into the Adriatic LNG terminal, or affect its interest in the Italian and European markets as a natural gas supplier, the company said.
(Reuters - Reporting by Sabrina Valle in Houston and Francesca Landini in Milan / Editing by Kirsten Donovan and Matthew Lewis)