Chad approves bill to nationalise assets ExxonMobil sold to Savannah Energy

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N'DJAMENA, March 29 (Reuters) - Chad's parliament on Wednesday approved a bill to nationalise oil assets and rights acquired last year by Savannah Energy from ExxonMobil's affiliate, Esso Exploration and Production Chad.

In December, ExxonMobil closed the sale of its operations in Chad and Cameroon to Africa-focussed oil and gas producer Savannah Energy in a $407 million deal, but the Chadian government challenged the agreement.

Out of 175 lawmakers present, 172 backed the law to nationalise the assets - a move Savannah vowed last week to contest.

"Savannah and Esso - ExxonMobil have taken actions that pose serious and immediate threats to public order in Chad as well as to all actors in this economic sector that is crucial to the stability and development of Chad," Minister of Petroleum and Energy Djerassem Le Bemadjiel told parliament.

Chad's energy and hydrocarbons ministry said last week that all the relevant assets and rights would be nationalised, including hydrocarbon permits and exploration and production authorisations that belonged to the Exxon Mobil subsidiary. (Reporting by Mahamat Ramadane Writing by Anait Miridzhanian Editing by Mark Potter)