American oil giant Murphy Oil has insisted its UK operations are still up for sale as it unveils plans to spin off its US businesses.

Murphy Oil put its Murco forecourt business up for sale in July 2010 but is still to find a buyer.

In a statement released today, the company said it was “continuing to review possible options with respect to selected assets”.

“The United Kingdom downstream operations will remain with Murphy until such time as these assets are fully divested,” it added.

The news came as Murphy Oil said it planned to spin off its US company into two separate units - Murphy USA and Murphy.

Murphy USA will include the company’s forecourt business, while Murphy will include the company’s exploration and production activities.