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  • honey_worm honey_worm Jul 28, 2012 5:10 PM Flag

    Tree on SHU: Article says all of EA up for sale now

    Royal Dutch Shell closes in on gas reserves

    OIL major Royal Dutch Shell is edging closer to achieving its long-held ambition to capture an advantageous gas reserves position in Papua New Guinea, after the latest twist in the tale of InterOil's planned liquefied natural gas project here.
    A recent move by the PNG department of petroleum to terminate a late-2009 government accord with InterOil for the project has shaken the US listed company’s plans to the core.
    InterOil is challenging the department's right to do away with the project agreement, a crucial framework for the development of its planned venture, which would tap its Elk and Antelope gas fields. It reckons it can find a way of dealing with the government’s concerns, which centre on the fragmented nature of the project, including both onshore and floating LNG plants.
    InterOil’s advisers, UBS, Morgan Stanley and Macquarie Capital, have for some months been seeking a major LNG operator to partner on the project. But now they are understood to be indicating to interested parties that all of InterOil’s holding in the gas fields is on offer, not just a partner stake.
    That would no doubt suit Shell, which may be reluctant to take a minority role alongside InterOil.
    Talk in the market is that the termination letter was the last straw for InterOil's board, which has lost patience with the sale process being run by the CEO, Phil Mulacek, and handed control of it to a board committee chaired by the CFO.
    But the message from the InterOil camp is that the board – chaired by Mulacek – is already closely involved in the partnering process, which is heading towards a resolution in the coming weeks in a manner that will satisfy the government’s concerns.
    The InterOil camp is sticking with the line that the deal with a partner will involve “an interest” in the gas fields.
    Meanwhile, when the Post- Courier forwarded a copy of this information to InterOil and Shell for comments and confirmation respectively, neither responded

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