ExxonMobil is in exclusive talks with Romgaz to divest all the shares in its Romanian subsidiary ExxonMobil Exploration and Production Romania.

A related exclusivity agreement has been signed between the two parties. The agreement is effective for a four-month period and is valid until 15 October 2021.

ExxonMobil Exploration and Production Romania own 50% of the rights and obligations under the concession agreement in the Neptun Deep gas project, which has been planned to be developed in the Romanian part of the Black Sea.

The other partner in the Neptun Deep offshore gas project is Austrian energy company OMV’s subsidiary OMV Petrom, which holds the remaining 50% interest.

The latest deal follows a binding offer made by Romgaz earlier this year to purchase ExxonMobil’s stake in the Neptun Deep project.

ExxonMobil intends to divest the stake in the deepwater offshore gas field development project due to the country’s regulatory changes and low oil and gas prices globally.

The firm acquired a stake in the block in 2008 while forming an exploration joint venture with OMV Petrom.

Since then, ExxonMobil purchased more than 3000km² of 3D seismic data over the Neptun Deep Block, which is contained in water depths ranging from 100m-1,700m.

Although the presence of natural gas at the block was confirmed in 2012 by drilling the first deepwater well Domino-1, the Neptun Deep block remained undeveloped.

As per the estimates, the block contains natural gas resources of approximately 42 billion cubic metres (bcm) to 84bcm.

The technical and commercial viability of the Neptun Deep offshore gas project is yet to be established.