Canada approves Chinese, Malaysian takeover of energy producers

OTTAWA Fri Dec 7, 2012 5:08pm EST

OTTAWA Dec 7 (Reuters) - Canada gave the green light on Friday for state-owned Chinese and Malaysian firms to snap up two domestic energy companies, but said that in the future it would only approve investments in the oil sands by state-owned companies on an exceptional basis.

The $15.1 billion purchase by China's CNOOC Ltd of Nexen Inc, will be the largest successful bid ever by a Chinese company if finally approved by U.S. regulators.

Caught up in the debate over CNOOC was the C$5.2 billion ($5.3 billion) offer by Malaysia's Petronas for Progress Energy Resources Corp, which was initially turned down in October but will now be able to proceed.