German energy giant E.ON said Wednesday it would sell its Norwegian oil and gas exploration business for $1.6 billion (1.4 billion euros) as it shifts focus to renewable energy.
The buyer is Deutsche Erdoel DEA -- formerly a subsidiary of its competitor RWE -- which will take over the equity interests in 43 licenses.
E.ON, hit by Germany's green energy transition, said last year it would spin off its conventional power activities to focus on renewable energy.
"The divestment of E.ON E&P Norge represents a significant step forward in this review process," said the company in a statement.
The Norwegian assets are the latest to be sold off after E.ON in recent months divested itself of operations in Spain and Italy.
Also "under strategic review" are exploration activities in the British North Sea, E.ON said in a statement.
DEA welcomed the deal, which allows it to more than double its hydrocarbon production in Norway, where it already holds 31 licenses.
After the news, E.ON shares rose 1.20 percent to 9.22 euros amid slow trading on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange.
The transaction is subject to customary regulatory approval.
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