China National Petroleum Corp (CNPC) secured a US$30 billion state loan from China Development Bank (CDB) to fund overseas expansion, Reuters reported. This is the latest example of Beijing’s efforts to capitalize on the global economic downturn by investing in foreign natural resources. CNPC entered into a five-year agreement with CDB at a reportedly favorable but as yet undisclosed interest rate. Specific projects to be funded by the loan have also yet to be disclosed. CDB has funded the majority of the US$46 billion in oil-for-loans deals signed by CNPC so far this year. Targets have included oil producers in Russia, Venezuela, Brazil, Kazakhstan and Angola. CNPC is already the largest operator of overseas assets among its domestic peers. It is currently in talks over what might be China’s largest ever overseas oil acquisition – a US$14.5 billion deal for a 75% stake in Spanish oil major Repsol’s Argentine unit.
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