28 May 2009

PNG National Gas Corp says it's been left out of LNG agreement

6:41 pm on 28 May 2009

Papua New Guinea's National Gas Corporation, or NGC, says it's been left out of the Benefits Sharing Agreement for the massive Liquid Natural Gas project to the detriment of landowners.

The BSA for the Exxon Mobil-led project was signed last week by most affected landowners.

But a number of landowners are yet to sign because they're unhappy with the deal - particularly the lack of access to gas and by-products for downstream activities.

The NGC chairman Alfred Kaiabe has voiced support for these landowners' bid for more than just cash benefits.

"We are left in limbo as to what should be done with the balance of the gas reserves so we are very much concerned that we are still into the traditional concessional agreements that are now outdated. We want to now go into the product sharing contract arrangements that are now in place in countries like Malaysia and Indonesia."

Alfred Kaiabe believes the NGC is entitled to 4% equity in the project but says it's been left out of the BSA deal.