PNG govt would 'strongly support' another LNG multinational

THE Papua New Guinean government says it will strongly support the introduction of another multinational oil and gas entry to assist with the development of the Elk-Antelope gas fields.
PNG govt would 'strongly support' another LNG multinational
PNG govt would 'strongly support' another LNG multinational
PNG govt would 'strongly support' another LNG multinational
PNG govt would 'strongly support' another LNG multinational
PNG govt would 'strongly support' another LNG multinational

PNG Petroleum and Energy Minister William Duma made the announcement as he welcomed the joint venture partnership between InterOil and Total following long, drawn-out commercialisation talks.

InterOil has agreed to sell Total a gross 61.3% interest in petroleum retention licence 15, which contains the Elk-Antelope gas fields and granted Total an exclusive right to negotiate a farm-in to all its exploration licences in PNG.

"This is an exciting day for Papua New Guinea and marks the first step on the road to that development of the second LNG project in PNG," Duma said.

"The PNG government welcomes this additional foreign investment in the growing PNG industry in this country and is particularly pleased by the diversity that this announcement represents.

"In a similar fashion, we note with interest the parties' intention of bringing in a new strategic partner into PNG.

"The government would strongly support the introduction of a new multinational oil and gas entry into PNG to assist with the development of Elk-Antelope and to further confirm that PNG is well and truly open for new business.

"Strengthening competition of the LNG sector in this great resource-rich country is high on our government's agenda."

Duma said InterOil had a long and successful record of investment in exploration in PNG.

"Given that InterOil has introduced a world-class partner to ensure development of its discovered resource, it is our intention to encourage InterOil and assist it where possible in positively dealing with exploration licences," he added.

InterOil's shares plummeted 37% to $US55.50 on the New York Stock Exchange following the announcement of the deal with Total.

They were last trading at $58.22.

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