Shell lures Woodside with stake in Iranian project

One of the main elements of Shell Australia Ltd.'s proposal to gain a controlling share of Woodside Petroleum Ltd. is to offer Woodside a 20% equity in the $800 million (US) Nowrooz-Soroush redevelopment project in Iran. The project involves rebuilding the war-torn production infrastructure of the oil fields, for which Shell is to be paid in crude oil from the fields' restored production. It is offering Woodside 20% of the agreed volume.


More details have surfaced about Shell Australia Ltd.'s offer to gain control of Woodside Petroleum Ltd.

It turns out that one of the main elements of Shell Australia Ltd.'s proposal to gain a controlling share of Woodside Petroleum Ltd. is to offer Woodside a 20% equity in the $800 million (US) Nowrooz-Soroush redevelopment project in Iran. The project involves rebuilding the war-torn production infrastructure of the oil fields, for which Shell is to be paid in crude oil from the fields' restored production. It is offering Woodside 20% of the agreed volume.

Woodside says the value of the Iranian deal is equivalent to about 25% of its wholly owned Enfield oil field off Western Australia, which has estimated reserves of around 60 million bbl.

Shell is also offering Woodside assets in New Zealand that include 18.75% of the Maui gas-condensate field; 50% of the onshore Kapuni gascondensate field; 49% of the recently discovered Maari oil field, expected to come on stream in 2003; and 18.33% in the Pohokura gas-condensate discovery.

Shell's Australian assets in the deal include equity in the North West Shelf fields ranging from 8.33% to 16.67%, its 22.46% stake in Laminaria oil field, and 25.5% of nearby Corallina oil field. Shell is also offering 28.57% of the yet-to-be-developed Gorgon gas-condensate fields and 12.5% of the Gorgon deepwater extension in Permit WA267-P.

Shell's aim is to sell these assets to Woodside in return for a lift in its shareholding in Woodside from the current 34% to around 60% (OGJ Online, May 22, 2000). It would also make Woodside its major Asia-Pacific exploration and development arm and make Perth one of the company's three global centers, along with The Hague and Houston.

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