Oil major BP has signed its first production sharing contract for shale gas exploration, development and production in China.
The deal is for the Neijiang-Dazu block in the Sichuan Basin with China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC).
The agreement was witness by chief executive Bon Dudley and CNPC chairman Wang Yilin and covers an area of 1,500km.
CNPC will be the operator for the project.
Dudley said: “We are pleased to reach this significant milestone as part of our strategic partnership with CNPC, building on our successful cooperation in and outside of China.
“We are looking forward to working together with CNPC on technology, operational and subsurface techniques in unconventional resources.
“We will bring our worldwide experience to our first unconventional gas project in onshore China with CNPC.
“We will combine this with CNPC’s knowledge and experience to bring gas to China’s growing clean energy market. China continues to be an important part of BP’s portfolio.”