Resources Development Minister Colin Barnett today welcomed news from the North West Shelf Gas participants that they have signed a Letter of Intent with Tohoku Electric for supply of liquefied natural gas from the North West Shelf.
“I am delighted that the NW Shelf Partners have signed with Tohoku Electric, for a number of reasons,“ Mr Barnett said.
“Firstly, the deal represents a good-sized contract which will further underpin the expansion to the partners’ Burrup Peninsula project.
“More significantly, Tohoku is the first new long-term customer for the project since 1985, and the first of the electric power companies from the newly-deregulated Japanese energy market to take sales from the expanded NW Shelf project.
“This is another significant step towards expansion of Western Australia’s largest resource development project and one which will bring significant economic benefits to the State.”
Mr Barnett said under the deal, Tohoku Electric would take 400,000 tonnes of LNG a year for 15 years from 2005, with an extra 400,000 tonnes in the first year.
He said LNG Train-4 would be bigger than existing LNG trains on the Burrup Peninsular, near Karratha.
The new train would have a capacity of somewhere between 3.9 and 4.2 million tonnes a year, compared with a combined capacity of 7.5 million tonnes a year for the existing three trains.
“This represents an increase in LNG production of capacity of about 50 per cent,” Mr Barnett said.
“The development of Train-4 will provide major benefits to the Pilbara region and WA as a whole.
“It is anticipated the $2.2 billion expansion will provide up to 2,000 construction jobs over three and a half years.
“The venture partners have signed three Letters of Intent for additional LNG sales with Tokyo Gas and Toho Gas in September 2000, and Osaka Gas in January 2001. These cover volumes of up to two million tonnes a year with deliveries starting from 2004.
“We are now starting to see the North West Shelf gas project as a pivotal development of major value-adding industries in the Karratha region which augurs well not only for the Pilbara, but for the State as a whole.”
Media contact: Diana Callander 9222 9686