Mitsui puts BassGas project stake on the market

Japan’s Mitsui & Co. has put its 35% interest in the BassGas project in the Bass basin off northern Tasmania up for sale. The announcement follows close on the heels of ExxonMobil’s move to test the market for sale of its offshore Gippsland basin fields.

Japan’s Mitsui & Co. has put its 35% interest in the BassGas project in the Bass basin offshore northern Tasmania up for sale. The announcement follows close on the heels of ExxonMobil Corp.’s move to test the market for the sale of its offshore Gippsland basin fields (OGJ Online, Sept. 18, 2019).

Mitsui is taking advice from merchant banker Rothschild for the proposed sale.

The BassGas project, centered on development of Yolla gas-condensate field, is operated by Beach Energy Ltd., Adelaide, with 53.75%. Indian entity Prize Petroleum Co. Ltd. has the remaining 11.25%.

Gas from Yolla is brought ashore in eastern Victoria for treatment and supply to the Victorian domestic grid. The field was brought on stream in 2006.

Mitsui acquired its BassGas stake as part of its $600-million (Aus.) takeover of Sydney-based AWE Ltd. in 2018. The project has been identified as a noncore asset in Mitsui’s broader energy portfolio.

Beach Energy, which bought its interest and operatorship in 2017 as part of its takeover of Origin Energy Ltd.’s Lattice portfolio, said that BassGas production for the 2019 financial year was 1.7 million boe. The project has 2P reserves of 20 million boe.

Further east, the ExxonMobil assets in Gippsland, which the company holds in a 50-50 joint venture with BHP Group, include 19 offshore platforms, numerous oil and gas fields, exploration acreage, the Longford and Long Island Point treatment plans, and associated infrastructure.

At this stage ExxonMobil says no agreements have been reached and no buyer identified. Operations will continue as normal during the sale process.

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