CNOOC Ltd. to explore upstream investment in Gorgon project

By OGJ editors

HOUSTON, Sept. 15 -- CNOOC Ltd. last week signed a letter of agreement with the joint venture partners of the Gorgon natural gas project off Western Australia to begin discussions about "a potential upstream investment" in the project by CNOOC.

In addition, CNOOC Ltd. has agreed to explore marketing opportunities for natural gas from Gorgon into China. This agreement builds on the August 2001 memorandum of understanding inked between CNOOC Ltd. and Chevron Australia Pty. Ltd. to explore the feasibility of acquiring equity interests in the Gorgon area and developing the LNG import market in China (OGJ Online, Aug. 13, 2001).

"LNG will play an increasingly important role in meeting China's growing energy demand, said Wei Liucheng, chairman and CEO of CNOOC Ltd. "CNOOC has already developed a competitive advantage in China's LNG and natural gas markets."

Gorgon participants are ChevronTexaco, operator with 4/7 interest, Royal Dutch/Shell Group 2/7, and ExxonMobil Corp. 1/7. The Gorgon development has estimated proved reserves of 11 tcf of gas.

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