Occidental's strong financial performance has built upon strategic transactions that transformed the company and established it in the industry. We continually manage our asset portfolio with an eye toward adding value through new acquisitions or, as we deem appropriate, through divestment.
Our stable, low-risk projects in the U.S., and development opportunities in the Middle East region and Latin America yield strong production growth and high returns on capital employed. Transactions must be projected to meet our stringent investment criteria: targeted returns of 15 percent or more for domestic projects and 20 percent or more for international projects. Our capital allocation philosophy is driven by the goal of creating long-term value for stockholders.
Al Hosn Gas Project: In January, a joint venture between Occidental and Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) announced that production began at the Al Hosn Gas Project in the United Arab Emirates. The 30-year joint venture was formed to develop the Shah field, one of the largest gas fields in the Middle East.
Execution of Strategic Review: As part of the previously announced strategic review initiatives, Occidental completed the following:
Minimizing Non-Core Operations: Occidental minimized or ceased its involvement in non-core operations in the Middle East and North Africa, including Bahrain, Iraq, Libya and Yemen.
Sale of Williston Basin Assets: In November, Occidental sold its interest in the Williston Basin of North Dakota.
Agreement to Sell: In December, Occidental entered into an agreement to sell its Piceance Basin operations in Colorado for approximately $155 million.
Chlor-alkali Plant in New Johnsonville, Tennessee: In March, OxyChem completed construction and began operating its membrane cell chlor-alkali plant in New Johnsonville, Tennessee.
Sale of Hugoton Field
In April, Occidental completed the sale of its Hugoton Field assets.
In September, Occidental's Centurion Pipeline unit expanded its Permian Basin oil pipeline infrastructure with the activation of the Cline Shale pipeline. In November, Occidental sold an additional portion of its investment in the General Partner of Plains All-American Pipeline, L.P., as well as sold its interest in the BridgeTex pipeline, retaining long-term, cost advantaged shipping commitments on BridgeTex, which runs from the Permian Basin to the Houston Gulf Coast area.
Spin-off of California Operations:
In November, Occidental completed the spin-off of its California oil and gas business into an independent, publicly-traded company, California Resources Corporation.
Strategic Review: In October 2013 and February 2014, Occidental's Board of Directors authorized several actions resulting from a strategic review to streamline and focus operations in order to better execute Occidental's long-term strategy and enhance value for shareholders. The authorized actions included:
Pursue the sale of a minority interest in the Middle East region operations in a financially efficient manner.
Pursue strategic alternatives for select Midcontinent oil and gas assets. In February 2014, Occidental announced that it reached a definitive agreement to sell its Hugoton Field assets to an undisclosed buyer for pre-tax proceeds of $1.4 billion.
Pursue the sale of a portion of Occidental's investment in the General Partner of Plains All-American Pipeline, L.P. (Plains Pipeline). Occidental sold a portion of Plains Pipeline, while continuing to hold an approximate 25-percent interest. The transaction resulted in a pre-tax gain of $1 billion.
Separation of Occidental's California assets into an independent and separately traded company.
Sale of Carbocloro Investment:
During the second quarter of 2013, Occidental sold its investment in Carbocloro, a Brazilian joint venture, for a pre-tax gain of $131
OxyChem Joint Venture with Mexichem:
In the fourth quarter of 2013, OxyChem and Mexichem, S.A.B. de C.V. formed a 50/50 joint venture to construct and operate a 1.2-billion-pound-per-year capacity ethylene cracker with startup expected in 2017, and entered into related supply agreements.
Sale of Argentine Oil and Gas Operations: Occidental sold its Argentine oil and gas operations for after-tax proceeds of approximately $2.6 billion. The sale closed in February 2011.
Acquisition of Properties in California, South Texas and North
Dakota: Occidental completed the acquisition of gas-producing properties in South Texas for approximately $1.8 billion and acquired other domestic oil and gas assets, which included properties in California and the Permian and Williston Basins, for approximately $2.6 billion.
Al Hosn Gas Project: Occidental acquired a 40-percent participating interest in the Al Hosn Gas Project in Abu Dhabi to develop one of the largest gas fields in the Middle East. Occidental is working with the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) in a 30-year joint venture agreement for the project.