Shell is considering selling stakes in two gas fields clusters, located in the southern UK North Sea, Reuters has reported, citing industry sources.

The possible sale forms part of the firm’s efforts to retreat from the North Sea, where production has been declining since the late 1990s.

The ageing basin is triggering long-time oil and gas producers to shift focus to other more prolific and profitable business.

As part of the latest plan, Shell intends to divest a stake of 50% in a cluster of fields located in the Clipper hub, in addition to the Leman Alpha complex, according to three sources.

A potential sale of these assets could earn $1bn in proceeds for the company, the report added.

Production from the two gas fields is transferred to the onshore Shell-operated Bacton gas terminal complex, in eastern England, through a pipeline.

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By GlobalData

Located 66km from the Norfolk coast, the Clipper hub has a capacity to transport approximately 400 million standard cubic feet of gas per day.

The Clipper hub not only produces and processes gas from its own wells, but also imports and processes gas from the Barque, Skiff, Galleon, Carrack, and Cutter fields.

The Clipper installation also imports and processes gas from Barque PB & PL, Galleon PN & PG, Skiff PS, Cutter QC, and Carrack QA.

Last month, Shell renewed talks with the UK’s offshore regulators over the Jackdaw gas field development, in the North Sea.

Earlier this month, Shell CEO Ben van Beurden said the company plans to sell assets, worth an average of $4bn, annually.

In recent years, Shell had divested stakes in several oil and gas assets in the North Sea. This include the sale of oil and gas producing assets to Harbour Energy for $3.8bn, in 2017.