Shell to sell Laos retail unit to PetroVietnam Oil
  • | Bloomberg | December 18, 2009 03:42 PM

Royal Dutch Shell Plc will sell its Laos retail unit to PetroVietnam Oil Co., a unit of Vietnam's state-owned oil company, which plans to expand into neighboring countries.

“Buying Shell's Laos business is the first step for PV Oil in its strategy of expanding market share in other countries in the region, including Laos and Cambodia,” Hanoi-based PV Oil said in an e-mailed statement today. It didn't give a value for the purchase.

PV Oil, which has representative offices in Caracas, Moscow and Singapore, is targeting “keeping pace with leading global oil trading houses,” it said. The oil importer and distributor's parent company, Vietnam Oil & Gas, has stakes in ventures in countries ranging from Algeria to Angola.

The company may also expand into southern China, Ho Tung Vu, PV Oil's deputy general director, said in an interview today in Ho Chi Minh City.

“PV Oil wants to compete with other regional and global players in the downstream business,” the statement said. Downstream is a term used in the oil industry to describe the refining, sale and distribution of petroleum products.

Crude oil produced in Vietnam is exported by PV Oil, which also imports petroleum products to meet domestic consumption. It also processes and distributes oil products.