Thai entry to PNG flagged

PAPUA New Guinean Prime Minister Peter O’Neill has promised to grant petroleum licences to Thailand’s PTT Exploration and Production, according to press reports.
Thai entry to PNG flagged Thai entry to PNG flagged Thai entry to PNG flagged Thai entry to PNG flagged Thai entry to PNG flagged

Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra and an accompanying business delegation visited PNG over recent days, which included a scheduled visit to the LNG plant site of the ExxonMobil-led PNG LNG project near Port Moresby.

While PNG LNG long ago signed up customers for the under-construction two-train capacity (6.9 million tonnes per annum) joint venture partners including Exxon are increasingly talking up the prospects of at least a third train expansion.

Thailand is a big LNG importer but recent press reports indicate there may be interest in PNG's upstream stakes.

According to the Bangkok Post, O'Neill agreed to "grant natural gas concessions to the Thai private sector" during talks with the Thai PM.

"The decision applies especially to PTT Exploration and Production Plc, Thailand's sole oil and gas explorer," the newspaper reported.

PTTEP acquired London-listed, Tanzanian gas producer Cove Energy for $US1.9 billion last year after Royal Dutch Shell pulled out of the bidding war.

The Bangkok Post separately reported that Thai Energy Minister Pongsak Raktapongpaisal denied Yingluck's trip to PNG was to follow up on business plans made in 2006 by her brother and former Thai PM Thaksin Shinawatra.

Thaksin Shinawatra visited PNG after the 2006 bloodless coup which ended his caretaker government.

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