KUALA LUMPUR: Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) has denied speculation over a merger between its indirect unit Malaysia Marine and Heavy Engineering Holdings Bhd (MHB) and Sapura Energy Bhd.

In a statement today, the national oil firm said any investment or divestment consideration within the Petronas group has always been and will continue to be strictly guided by a board-approved and management-enforced framework.

According to news reports earlier this month, a merger between debt-laden Sapura Energy and MHB could well be on the cards if preliminary discussions on the proposal bear fruit.

Quoting sources, the reports said the majority shareholders of Sapura Energy and MHB, namely Permodalan Nasional Bhd and Petronas respectively, are “mulling” merging the two oil and gas services providers but stressed the discussions are still at “an early stage”. -Bernama