The Herald Sun reports that the PNG LNG project has signed a major customer - Chinese commit to PNG gas deal.
THE Papua New Guinea liquefied natural gas project, in which Santos and Oil Search are involved, has settled a deal with a Chinese company to take two million tonnes of LNG for 20 years.
The deal with China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation (Sinopec), follows Oil Search's recent $895 million placement and a $40 million share purchase plan and sets the scene for a final investment decision on the huge project. Oil Search expects the partners, led by ExxonMobil, to make a decision next week.
It should also set the scene for final sales and purchase agreements with other Asian LNG buyers who have indicated their willingness to take 4.3 million tonnes of LNG, the balance of the project's planned output.
The PNG project will supply Sinopec through an LNG terminal it is building in China's Shandong province. The project is scheduled to start production in 2013 or early 2014 and the formal sales and purchase agreement maintains its apparent lead on Queensland's major proposed coal seam gas to LNG projects, which are also aiming to be in production in 2014.