BusinessWeek reports that the Ichthys LNG plant has stalled once again - Inpex Delays Investment Decision on Ichthys LNG.
Inpex Corp., Japan’s largest energy explorer, has delayed for a second time a final investment decision and the start of commercial operation for its proposed $20 billion liquefied natural gas project in Australia.
The company won’t make the decision this year or start operations in 2015, as previously planned, Director Masahiro Murayama told reporters in Tokyo today without providing a reason for the delay.
Inpex, the operator of the venture, and partner Total SA are seeking to capitalize on Asia’s growing demand for the cleaner fuel. Natural gas futures in New York fell yesterday on forecasts inventory increases will continue to be larger than normal as consumption fails to keep pace with expectations.
“Inpex has probably been reviewing the structure of the Ichthys project’s cost, at a time global gas demand growth is slowing briefly,” Hidetoshi Shioda, a senior energy analyst at Mizuho Securities Co., said by telephone from Tokyo.
In November, Inpex delayed the investment decision from the first half of this year until the second half because more time was needed for pre-engineering and design work for offshore facilities, including pipelines and a floating production unit.
The plant will process gas from the WA-285-P field, 850 kilometers (530 miles) off the coast of northern Australia, and have an annual capacity of 8 million metric tons.
The story was front page news in the Territory, albeit considered slightly less important than an environmental news story looking at the behaviour of native fauna.