A Chinese consortium led by China Offshore Oil Corp. (CNOOC) and oil major BP aim to complete a feasibility study for China's first liquefied
natural gas (LNG) project by next June. An agreement for the supply of gas is also expected to be sealed in a similar timeframe, the official said.
The Chinese consortium and BP plan to build a three million ton per year (tpy) LNG import terminal in southern Chinese province of Guangdong by the end of 2005. "We aim to finish the study around May or June next year. It is hoped that the gas supply contract will also fall into place around the same schedule," he said. The Guangdong LNG Joint Executive Office, a joint management team based in the city of Shekou, is preparing bidding documents for potential gas suppliers, the Shekou-based official said.
He did not say when the bidding documents would be issued, adding that the papers were subject to approval by the State Development Planning Commission.
Companies vying for the gas supply contract include
Royal Dutch/Shell, a partner in Australia's Northwest Shelf and Russia's Shakhlin gas projects, and BP which has a stake in Indonesia's Tangguh LNG project.
National oil companies in Malaysia and Oman were also among keen candidates, industry sources said.
The official said the joint management team also was looking to seal take-or-pay gas sales contracts with consumers in China's most prosperous province of Guangdong by mid-2002. In April, BP took a 30 percent equity stake in the $616-million project, which includes the LNG terminal and a 215-km pipeline. CNOOC, the parent of CNOOC Ltd., is the leading shareholder with 33 percent equity. Chinese partners in the CNOOC consortium are five Guangdong companies and Hong Kong utilities, Hongkong Electric Holdings Ltd. and Hong Kong and China Gas Co Ltd. - (Reuters)