Malampaya expansion on the way

THE Philippine government should sign a deal next month with consortium partners to expand the Malampaya gas project with the $US1.5 billion ($A1.37 billion) second and third phases.
Malampaya expansion on the way Malampaya expansion on the way Malampaya expansion on the way Malampaya expansion on the way Malampaya expansion on the way

The government holds a 10% stake in the project, located southwest of Manilla, through wholly-owned PNOC Exploration Company, while Shell Philippines Exploration and Chevron Malampaya each hold a 45% stake.

According to Reuters, Philippine Energy Secretary Jose Rene Almendras told reporters the expansion was definitely on the cards.

"We have formed an inter-agency team to get the permits. We are also asking PNOC-EC to get ready for its share of investments," he said.

The giant project supplies the main island of Luzon with enough gas to fire up 2700 megawatts of power per day from gas-fired power plants, or 30% of the country's energy needs.

The government and consortium said in the past they planned to ramp up the project to increase supply by an extra 300MW, and the consortium had signed up to supply gas to power producers for the next 20 years.

The consortium spent about $1.2 billion to develop the first phase of the project between 2002 and 2006, with the project counting as the largest foreign investment in the country at that time.

The country is looking to source more gas for electricity generation, leading to speculation that gas from the Prelude field could be sold onto Philippine import terminals.

"We are interested in seeing how we can participate in the LNG program of the government and we have always been looking at coming in with potential local partners," Shell Philippines chairman Edgar Chua was quoted by ABS-CBN as saying in May.

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