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CNOOC to drill two wells with foreign investors - chairman

Written by: Staff

BEIJING, Mar 5 (Reuters) China's top offshore oil producer, China National Offshore Oil Corp. (CNOOC), plans to drill two new wells with foreign investors in the South China Sea, the firm's head said on Sunday.

CNOOC would collaborate with Canada's Husky Energy Inc. and U.S.

oil and gas producer Kerr-McGee Corp. on the deep-sea wells with drilling expecting to start this year, CNOOC Chairman Fu Chengyu told reporters on the sidelines of China's Parliament.

Fu did not clarify if he was speaking of CNOOC's parent company or its listed arm CNOOC Ltd.

CNOOC's unlisted parent would invest in alternative energy including coal-to-liquid and solar and wind energy, Fu added.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said in a speech to Parliament on Sunday that China would cut the amount of energy it uses to produce each unit of national income by 4 percent this year.

''This is a good thing, it could help resolve the supply and demand contradiction, especially in reducing imports of expensive crude oil,'' Fu said of the 4 percent reduction target.

''It won't damage our business as we will develop alternative energy sources.'' China, the world's second-largest oil consumer, is concerned about growing dependence on imported oil and the health and environmental impact of burning ever-greater amounts of dirty coal.

Reuters PG GC0922

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