Shell sells Canadian assets for $7.3 billion

Royal Dutch Shell said it has agreed to sell much of its Canadian oil sands business for $8.5 billion.

It has also struck a deal to purchase other Canadian assets from Houston’s Marathon Oil Corp. for $1.3 billion, the company said Thursday.

The Anglo-Dutch oil major said the transactions would jettison assets in Canada that extract heavy oil sands by blasting hot steam underground. It would also cut its stake in the Athabasca Oil Sands Project, which includes mining operatrions and a facility that coverts oil sands to synthetic crude, from 60 percent to 10 percent. In addition, it is selling undeveloped oil sands leases in Alberta.

The deal is part of Shell’s plan to divest $30 billion in assets, Shell CEO Ben van Beurden said in a written statement.