Otway Gas Project Receives Joint Venture Approval

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20 May 2004

Origin Energy advises that final joint venture approval has been obtained for Phase 1 of the Otway Gas Project.

The decision of the joint venture partners – comprising Woodside Energy Limited (as operator), Origin Energy Resources Limited, Benaris International NV and CalEnergy Gas (Australia) Limited – initiates a three-phase A$1.1 billion development that will encompass the Thylacine and Geographe gas fields in the offshore Otway Basin.

Phase 1 of the project involves the investment of A$810 million to develop the Thylacine gas field, located 70km south of Port Campbell, Victoria, in a water depth of 100 metres. This phase will include an unmanned offshore platform at the Thylacine field, offshore and onshore pipelines, and a new gas processing plant to be built next to the existing Iona gas facility, 6km north of Port Campbell.

The gas plant will produce natural gas, Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) and condensate. Planned annual production from the plant is 60 PJ of sales gas, over 100,000 tonnes of LPG and over 800,000 barrels of condensate.

The Geographe field, located 15km north of Thylacine, will be connected to the main offshore pipeline in a later development phase.

Commenting on the decision to proceed with the development, Origin Energy’s Managing Director Grant King said “Origin’s investment in the Otway Gas Project underpins the company’s focus on gas prospects that are capable of early development close to south-eastern Australian markets. For many years, Origin has believed the Otway Basin would play a major role in supplying gas to this market, and the approval of this development is a significant step towards making this a reality.

“The development of the Thylacine field also provides an infrastructure hub into which future discoveries may be connected. Origin looks forward to a long commercial life for this development and to an exciting exploration program in the future.”

Origin also announced today that it has contracted with CalEnergy and Benaris to purchase their share of sales gas produced from the development. Including its own gas, Origin will now take 48.45% of the sales gas produced from the field, or approximately 29 PJ per annum.

Mr King said “Origin is pleased to have secured contracts for the off-take of gas from CalEnergy and Benaris, as well as Origin’s own equity gas. This will add significantly to the long term competitiveness of Origin’s gas supply portfolio for use in its Retail and Generation businesses in south-eastern Australia.”


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