Woodside To Raise Stake In Natural Gas Field

Woodside Petroleum has indicated that it is in plans to acquire the 50% stake that ExxonMobil holds in the Scarborough gas field of Australia. This comes after getting the greenlight from BHP Billiton, a part owner of the project. Last month Woodside disclosed that it had consented to paying approximately $744 million for the stake held by ExxonMobil in the gas field. The project was first proposed close to four decades ago but has been held back by numerous delays. Once Woodside acquires ExxonMobil’ stake its holding will increase to 75%.

According to Woodside the deal will be concluded before this quarter ends. BHP Billiton has also been granted by Woodside the option of buying an extra 10% stake in the project. In 2016 Woodside acquired a stake of 25% from BHP.

Grassy Point LNG plant

This comes about a week since Woodside Petroleum dropped plans to construct an LNG plant in British Columbia. The project which is located at Grassy Point sits on a property measuring 693 hectares and is close to Price Rupert. Woodside was granted the rights to purchase land in the area by the provincial government in 2014. The Australian petroleum company will now focus on developing another project in British Columbia known as Kitimat LNG which it jointly owns with Chevron.

“The decision was made after careful consideration of our long-term development strategy in Canada. We are grateful to all of those who have devoted time and resources to working with us as we have explored the feasibility of developing the Grassy Point LNG project,” said a statement released by Woodside Petroleum.

More stalled projects

The cancellation of the Woodside LNG project is not the only instance where liquefied natural gas plans are being abandoned in the West Coast of Canada. In 2017 some of the projects that were axed in British Columbia include Prince Rupert LNG, Pacific NorthWest LNG, Aurora LNG and Steelhead LNG.

With regards to Kitimat LNG, Woodside inked a deal to acquire a stake of 50% in the project from Apache Corp three years ago. The deal also saw Woodside become an owner of drilling properties for natural gas in the northeastern parts of British Columbia. Natural gas produced by Kitimat LNG in the interior of British Columbia will be transported to a terminal located at Bish Cove via the planned Pacific Trail Pipeline. An export terminal is expected to be constructed at Bish Cove with LNG Canada which is led by Royal Dutch Shell expected to build it.

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