Woodside share price in the green as Shell offloads stake in $30 billion JV gas project

Woodside shareholders don't appear fazed by Shell's decision to divest its stake in the $30 billion Browse gas project.

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Key points

  • The Woodside share price is gaining on Monday
  • Shell reported it will divest its 27% stake in the Browse LNG project, in WA
  • BP will acquire Shell’s stake for an as yet undisclosed sum

The Woodside Energy Group Ltd (ASX: WDS) share price is marching higher on Monday.

Shares in the S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) oil and gas stock closed Friday trading for $33.68 apiece. They are currently swapping hands for $34.06 a share, up 1.13%.

With oil prices ticking up over the weekend, energy stocks are broadly outperforming today.

At the time of writing, the S&P/ASX 200 Energy Index (ASX: XEJ) is up 1.45%, outpacing the 0.55% gains posted by the ASX 200.

Judging by today's market reaction, the Woodside share price doesn't appear to be suffering from the decision by Shell PLC (NYSE: SHEL) to divest its stake in the Browse LNG joint venture project, located in Western Australia.

Why is Shell selling and who's buying?

As The Australian Financial Review reports, Shell will offload its 27% stake in the $30 billion offshore Browse LNG project, which Woodside says is Australia's largest untapped conventional gas resource.

With mounting pressure from environmental groups concerned about future carbon emissions – and growing regulatory uncertainty for such projects in Australia – Shell said its stake in Browse was "no longer a strategic fit".

Subject to regulatory approvals, BP plc (NYSE: BP) will acquire Shell's holdings. It's not yet clear how much Shell will receive for the sale of its 27% stake, which will bring BP's holdings in the JV project to 44%.

While Browse may no longer be a good fit for Shell, BP's commitment to the project could be offering some support to the Woodside share price today.

"Browse, with carbon capture and storage (CCS), can help underpin the energy system of today while we invest in and build the energy system of tomorrow," a BP spokesman said (quoted by the AFR).

"BP supports the current concept which proposes development of the Browse gas resources using existing North West Shelf (NWS) gas processing facilities," he added.

Woodside share price snapshot

Despite a retrace in oil and gas prices over the past year, the Woodside share price remains up almost 10% over the past 12 months.

Motley Fool contributor Bernd Struben has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has positions in and has recommended BP. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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