LNG project is not far away

QGC British Gas (BG) is on the verge of making a final investment decision on the Queensland Curtis LNG Project within weeks, if not days.

Industry insiders claim BG is poised to sign the documents as soon as Federal Environment Minister Peter Garrett lays his pen on the environmental approval.

Mr Garrett told The Observer on Friday the environmental assessments for the QGC LNG project had been underway for some time and he would be due make a decision soon.

QGC general manager of LNG operations Gary Robertson said at a Gladstone industry conference last week the final investment decision for the Curtis Island project was expected to be announced in the new financial year.

“And let me say that the new financial year is only a few days away,” Mr Robertson said.

BG signed a contract in March worth an estimated $60 billion to supply natural gas to China National Offshore Oil Corp (CNOOC), a Chinese state-controlled oil producer, for 20 years.

The contract is the largest LNG supply deal signed by BG and came almost a year after the two companies agreed preliminary terms for CNOOC to acquire 3.6 million tonnes of LNG a year, shipped from BG’s proposed export terminal in Gladstone along with a 10 per cent share of the project’s first two LNG processing trains.

China is fast becoming a major business partner for the UK-based BG, since it bought into two deepwater exploration blocks there in 2006.

A spokesman for QGC a BG Group told The Observer they wouldn’t speculate as to when a decision would be made.

“We expect to consider a final investment decision on the project later in 2010,” he said.



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