June 28 (Reuters) - Talisman Energy Inc said it will exit a gas-to-liquids joint-venture project with South Africa’s Sasol Ltd in the Montney shale formation in British Columbia.
“Talisman’s immediate focus is to accelerate investment in near-term liquids opportunities, with the goal of increasing liquids and oil-linked gas production to 300,000 barrels a day by 2015,” said CEO John Manzoni.
Talisman and Sasol Canada were studying whether western Canada could support a gas-to-liquids plant similar to the ones Sasol has built in Qatar. Such plants convert low-value natural gas into diesel or other fuels that command much higher prices.
Talisman, Canada’s fifth-largest independent oil explorer, said last June that it would decide in mid-2012 whether going ahead with the plant would be more profitable than selling gas into the North American market or liquefying it to ship overseas.
The Canadian company said its decision to exit the project will not impact its upstream partnership with Sasol, the world’s top maker of motor fuel from coal.
Talisman was granted the option to participate in the feasibility study as part of its partnership with Sasol.
This deal included two 50 percent working interests in two natural gas assets and associated infrastructure in Talisman’s Montney shale resources.
Shares of Talisman were up 2 percent at C$11.21 on Thursday morning on the Toronto Stock Exchange.