Chevron, Shell exchange Australian gas assets

Chevron Corp. agreed to exchange some holdings in the Browse LNG development for Shell Development (Australia) Pty. Ltd.’s interests in Clio and Acme fields offshore northwest Australia.

In addition to exchanging natural gas assets, Shell also will pay Chevron $450 million. The agreement remains subject to regulatory and other approvals.

Chevron plans to exchange its 16.7% interest in East Browse titles and 20% interest in the West Browse titles for Shell's 33.3% interest in the WA-205-P and WA-42-R blocks.

George Kirkland, Chevron vice-chairman, said, “Acquiring the remaining interests in WA-205-P and WA-42-R fits strategically with our long-term plans to grow our Wheatstone area resource base,” for the Wheatstone LNG project (OGJ Online, July 17, 2012).

Andy Brown, Shell upstream international director, said the transaction helps simplify ownership of the Browse gas fields (OGJ Online, Aug. 2, 2012). “The Browse gas fields are a key LNG development opportunity for Australia,” Brown said, adding that Shell is committed to continue working with Woodside Petroleum Ltd., the operator.

Shell has a 33.3% interest in the Clio-Acme titles WA-42-R and WA-205-P. Currently, Chevron’s East Browse titles are WA30R, WA31R, WA32R, WAR2, and TR5 and its West Browse titles are WA28R, WA29R, and WA275P.

Upon closing, Shell will hold 35% interest in the West Browse titles and 25% interest in the East Browse titles.

Chevron will retain its interests in the following Browse basin exploration leases: WA-274-P, WA-281-P, and WA-410-P.

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