Oil Search completes placement for Elk-Antelope fields amid political dustup

Oil Search Ltd. has completed its share placement to the Papua New Guinea government in the recently announced deal to fund the company’s acquisition of a 22.835% stake in retention license PRL15 containing the Elk and Antelope fields in the eastern Highlands of Papua New Guinea for $900 million (OGJ Online, Feb. 27, 2014). The placement involved 149.39 million fully paid ordinary shares to the state, giving it a 10% interest in Oil Search.

The deal, which was completed last week, involved the acquisition of 100% of Pac LNG Group (formerly Pacific LNG), which is affiliated with the privately owned Swiss banking firm Clarion Finanz AG.

However the government’s involvement has sparked unrest in Papua New Guinea political circles with opposition leader Belden Namah calling on Prime Minister Peter O’Neill to resign, ostensibly because he has committed Papua New Guinea to a $700 million (Aus.) loan to fund its stake in Oil Search.

Flames were fanned this week when O’Neill sacked the leaders of two coalition partners—William Duma and Don Poyle—from their respective posts as petroleum minister and treasurer.

Rumors abound that the pair were sidelined because of their opposition to the further $700 million debt and the move to raise the country’s debt ceiling above 35% of gross domestic product.

O’Neill maintained they were causing instability and he himself has assumed the powers of treasurer.

Namah says the move is a blatant push to borrow more. He said the country’s debt had doubled to $2.4 billion from $1.2 billion while the debt-to-GDP ratio will rise to 37% from 35%.

Related Articles

Market watch: Energy futures prices rose slightly Friday

05/06/2002 Crude oil futures prices rose slightly Friday amid lingering uncertainty about a possible disruption of Middle East supplies, although tensions in ...

Gulf of Mexico oil service sector showing signs of an upturn

05/06/2002 The Gulf of Mexico oil service sector is experiencing the signs of an upturn, analysts with Simmons & Co. International, UBS Warburg LLC, and RBC D...

OTC: Industry, national agencies need to work together to make FPSOs work in the gulf

05/06/2002 Over the coming years, the oil and gas industry will have to keep an open line of communication with national agencies such as the US Coast Guard a...

Market watch: Energy futures prices fall as Iraq lifts embargo

05/07/2002 Crude oil futures prices fell Monday after Iraq announced plans to lift a self-imposed export embargo with exports expected to resume by Wednesday.

Careers at TOTAL

Careers at TOTAL - Videos

More than 600 job openings are now online, watch videos and learn more!

 

Click Here to Watch

Other Oil & Gas Industry Jobs

Search More Job Listings >>
Stay Connected