Canada's Bankers Petroleum agrees to takeover by Chinese firm

Sun Mar 20, 2016 2:03pm EDT
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TORONTO, March 20 (Reuters) - Canada's Bankers Petroleum Ltd , one of Albania's largest foreign investors, said on Sunday it has agreed to be acquired by affiliates of China's Geo-Jade Petroleum Corp for C$575 million ($442.34 million).

Bankers Petroleum said it will be bought by firms owned by the Chinese oil and gas exploration and production company for C$2.20 ($1.69) per share.

Shares of Bankers Petroleum closed at C$1.11 in Toronto on Friday.

The Canadian company said its corporate and technical headquarters will remain in Calgary. The deal is subject to shareholder approval at a meeting before the end of May. Bankers Petroleum said the company will be delisted after the sale.

Bankers Petroleum began exploration in Albania in 2004 and operates the largest onshore oil field in continental Europe, according to the Albania Energy Association.

The Albanian government has accused Bankers Petroleum of understating earnings to avoid its 50 percent profit tax. It announced in January it will renegotiate its oil output-sharing contracts and impose a limit on expenses that oil companies can use to offset tax liability.

($1 = 1.2999 Canadian dollars) (Reporting by Ethan Lou in Toronto; Editing by Alan Crosby)