The Abu Dhabi National Energy Co. (TAQA) announced that its wholly owned Canadian subsidiaries, TAQA North Ltd. and 1350849 Alberta Ltd., have entered into an agreement to acquire all issued and outstanding trust units and exchangeable shares of Calgary-based PrimeWest Energy Trust for cash consideration of C$26.75/unit, or approximately C$5 billion on a fully diluted basis. The transaction, subject to regulatory approval and adjustments, is expected to close by the end of November.

Once completed, the transaction will provide TAQA with an additional 285,000 bbl of proved plus probable reserves, production in excess of 61,000 boe/d and more than 1.1 million acres of strategic undeveloped land. TAQA North will have proved plus probable reserves in excess of 480 MMboe and production of more than 105,000 boe/d following the completion of the transaction and the closing of the previously announced US$540 million acquisition of Pioneer Canada (see NGI, Sept. 3).

During a conference call last Tuesday, TAQA CEO Peter Barker-Homek said the company has set itself a global goal to build a $60 billion company by 2012, with $20 billion of its assets in Canada.

"TAQA has a vision to build a global blue chip company by investing in energy companies across the value chain, from wellhead to burnertip," Barker-Homek said.

"We are purposefully focused on target markets such as Canada that have limited political, price and volume risks but significant resource potential. Furthermore, we only invest in quality companies with existing cash flows which can be significantly enhanced by [TAQA's] operational expertise.

"Our strategy in Canada is for aggressive growth through a combination of acquisitions and organic drilling activity. At this point our focus remains on the conventional oil and gas market and coalbed methane. The other area where we're looking to grow is generation and renewables, such as wind."

TAQA North Ltd., formerly Northrock Resources Ltd., was renamed after TAQA bought it from Pogo Producing Co. in May for $2 billion in cash (see NGI, June 4). The Calgary-based oil and gas exploration company has operations in Alberta, British Columbia, Saskatchewan and the Northwest Territories. At year-end 2006 Northrock had 706 Bcfe of estimated proved reserves, with 51% of the output and 55% of the reserves in oil.

TAQA, which was founded in Abu Dhabi in 2005, is a global energy company with operations in power generation, desalination, renewables, upstream oil/gas, pipelines, gas storage and liquefied natural gas. TAQA subsidiaries provide more than 85% of the electricity and water in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi.

PrimeWest CEO Don Garner said his company was first approached by TAQA shortly after its C$1.25 billion merger with Shiningbank Energy Income Fund earlier this year (see NGI, May 14). Last year, PrimeWest acquired producing oil and gas assets located in Montana, North Dakota and Wyoming for US$300 million from an undisclosed buyer.

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