Woodside to start new LNG Train every two years

Friday, 16 November 2007

The Australian operator, whose North West Shelf Train 5 is scheduled to start production in 2008, has three other LNG projects under development, Pluto LNG, Browse LNG and Sunrise LNG.


However, Woodside warned in a presentation to investors that the LNG market was becoming tighter as not enough new LNG production projects were underway.


The company said there was a lack of final investment decisions at a time when the global market has an appetite for 20 million tonnes per annum of LNG supply growth.


Woodside said its own growth strategy involved the completion of a new LNG Train every two years and its envisaged engineering and construction programme would see nine new Trains completed.


The Australian company would become the fourth-largest LNG company by 2015 behind Shell, ExxonMobil and France’s Total – but ahead of BP and Chevron Corp, and not including state energy companies such as Sonatrach of Algeria and Qatar Petroleum.


Woodside said a search was underway for more global LNG assets, though it didn’t say what its plans entailed.


Investment bankers have said that Woodside and BG Group of the UK would be the ideal mergers and acquisitions fit in the LNG industry, creating a company with global reach.


The Australian company’s additional LNG Trains would be: NWS Train 5 (2008); Pluto Train 1; Pluto Train 2; Browse Trains 1 and 2; Sunrise Train 1; Pluto Train 3; and NWS Trains 6 and 7.


Woodside also sees LNG shipping as a means to add value to its business and will have four LNG carriers under its control from 2014 to “capture arbitrage and spot cargo opportunities.”