El Paso to cut debt by a third, while gas trader pleads guilty

Struggling US gas company El Paso Corp has announced a plan to reduce its total debt from $22 billion as of September 30 to $15 billion by the end of 2005. Chiefexecutive Doug Foshee says: “The plan identifies the long-term businesses ofthe company, details a corporate reorganisation that will result in significantcost savings and establishes a new strategic direction for El Paso’s explorationand production business.”

The Houston-based company aims to achieve the debt reduction through $3.3