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China Offshore Giant To Bid For Canada Oil Firm

Nations Energy produces more than 50,000 barrels per day

Chinese offshore oil producer CNOOC Ltd. is considering a bid for a Kazakhstan oil producer just after announcing a major acquisition in Nigeria.

A bid for little-known, Canada-based Nations Energy, whose main asset is a large field of heavy crude in Kazakhstan, would mark the latest in a string of attempts by Chinese State oil companies to secure overseas reserves to fuel the country's surging economy.

CNOOC is setting its sight on Kazakhstan again after failing in 2003 in its joint bid with domestic peer Sinopec Corp. for a US$1.23 billion stake in Kazakhstan's Kashagan field from UK's BG Group.

Nations Energy produces more than 50,000 barrels per day, mostly from a field in Kazakhstan that it says contains nearly a half-billion barrels of reserves.