Article – PNG LNG project begins loading first export tanker

14 May 2014
Liam Cochrane
ABC News
Papua New Guinea’s LNG project has begun loading liquid natural gas onto a tanker ship, with the first export to Japan expected within days.
The first loading marks another milestone in the $AUD19 billion project, which is running ahead of schedule.
“This is the defining moment to show the world just what Papua New Guinea is capable of,” said Peter Graham, managing director of ExxonMobil PNG Ltd, the operator of the project.
“It is with great pride that I stand here today with our first LNG vessel, the Spirit of Hela, moored behind me and the first cargo only days away from being shipped to our customers.”
PNG’s prime minister Peter O’Neill attended the first loading event on Wednesday, along with former prime minister Sir Michael Somare, other ministers and land council representatives.
“This is a momentous occasion for Papua New Guinea,” Mr O’Neill said.
“This project has highlighted many achievements for us. One of them is that we are capable of delivering a world-class project.”
The ExxonMobil gas project is PNG’s biggest ever development and its first LNG project.
Gas is pumped from wells in the highlands of PNG and sent through pipelines 700 kilometres southeast to a processing plant outside the capital Port Moresby.
There, the gas is cooled to -161 degrees celsius and the liquefied product is loaded for export.
ExxonMobil’s PNG facility has the capability to produce 6.9 million tonnes of LNG a year and is expected to last 30 years.
When the LNG processing plant is in full production, there will be six tanker ships constantly delivering LNG to customers in Asia.
The company and the PNG government have decided to place landowner royalties into a fund while a process called ‘clan vetting’ properly identifies landowners.
Courtesy of ABC News