Brazil regulator may fine OGX for natural gas unit sale -paper

Reuters

RIO DE JANEIRO, Nov 1 (Reuters) - OGX Petróleo e GasParticipações SA, the oil company controlled by embattled tycoonEike Batista, might face a penalty because it did not notifyBrazilian regulator ANP before the sale of its natural gas unit,ANP's head said in a report in newspaper Valor Economico onFriday.

On Thursday, just a day after filing for bankruptcyprotection, OGX agreed to sell its 67 percent stake in the gasunit to São Paulo-based buyout firm Cambuhy Investimentos Ltdaand German utility E.ON SE.

The deal was expected to provide OGX with $344 million ($153million). Without the money, the oil company could run out ofcash by the end of 2013.

An OGX spokeswoman could not be reached immediately forcomment. On Thursday, OGX said the deal was subject to approvalby its creditors, the ANP and the antitrust watchdog Cade.

The gas unit, formally known as OGX Maranhão Petróleo e GasSA, is its best-performing asset. Some of the oil company'screditors, including asset manager BlackRock Inc and theworld's biggest bond investor Pimco, are worried OGX may usecash to fund operations that are not viable rather than repay$3.6 billion in debt.

Batista has been breaking up his Grupo EBX conglomerate,which includes OGX as well as a port operator, a mining firm andenergy interests, to pay back debt since shares of his listedcompanies sank this year due to missed performance targets.

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