By Daily Mail Reporter
Last updated at 8:43 AM on 12th July 2010
Takeover plans: Oil giant Exxon have been given the nod by Washington to mount a £100billion bid for BP
Oil giant Exxon has been given clearance by Washington to mount a £100billion bid for BP as the embattled British company undertakes a high-stakes gamble to cap the Gulf of Mexico spill.
The U.S. government has told Exxon that it will not stand in its way if it chooses to attempt a takeover.
Sources said the American oil group – which was responsible for the world’s biggest oil spill until the disaster in the Gulf – had expressed a ‘serious interest’ in the deal.
The development came as BP removed a containment cap on the well to put a better one in its place.
During the procedure there will be no means of controlling the leak, meaning some 2.5million gallons of oil will gush into the sea until it is sealed again.
Since the Deepwater Horizon rig exploded on April 20, BP has lost more than half its share value.
Last night BP refused to comment on the takeover speculation – but conceded it could take seven days to place a better cap on the well.