SPB secures 5 licenses in PNG

Published at Jul 6, 2016, in Energy

South Pacific Resources is a very high risk stock. Getting mining projects up and running in countries such as PNG is no simple feat for political and social reasons, and there may be challenges ahead. You need to fully inform yourself of all factors and information relating to this company before engaging with it.

South Pacific Resources (ASX:SPB) has secured five licenses, covering 75,000 km2, to explore the highly prospective unconventional oil and gas reserve acreage in Papua New Guinea.

The opportunity for unconventional exploration and development of oil and gas reserves in PNG has come about due to the country’s Unconventional Hydrocarbons Act enacted on 26th February 2016, replacing the previous Oil and Gas Act of 1998.

Over the past few years SPB has been working alongside Petroleum and Energy Minister Micah, former Ministers Duban and Duma, and the PNG Department of Petroleum and Energy, in assessing the country’s potential for shale gas.

Due to SPB’s close relationship with the PNG government, Minister Micah reserved the licenses for five years ensuring SPB faces no competition.

The project has been undertaken with the full knowledge and support of the Prime Minister, the Hon. Peter O’Neill.

Current analysis has concluded that the unconventional oil and gas reserves may be significantly greater in magnitude than the country’s known conventional oil and gas reserves.

The applications lodged by SPB for the unconventional hydrocarbon exploration and development in PNG cover:

  • The shales surrounding the producing Foldbelt oil and gas fields, which could potentially provide the resources to extend the lives of the Kutubu, Gobe / SE Gobe, and other diminishing fields in the Foldbelt;
  • The shales surrounding the Hides, Juha and P’Nyang gas fields that presently provide gas for the PNG LNG Project, for which a third train is presently being contemplated;
  • The highly prospective shales surrounding the Elk / Antelope / Triceratops gas discoveries that comprise the proposed Papua LNG Project which is presently awaiting confirmation of sufficient reserves to enable the project’s proponents to reach FID;
  • The areas surrounding the proposed Stanley LNG Project in Western Province, which is presently looking for additional reserves sufficient to underpin a small scale LNG project; and
  • A large area of the Foreland where a number of stranded unconventional oil and gas fields presently sit.

In recognition of SBP’s relationship with the PNG government over the past few years the five applications will be reviewed and considered as a priority.

In the meantime, the PNG Petroleum and Energy department is allowing SBP to continue ongoing exploration and early drilling.

The new hydrocarbons legislation will allow PNG to develop the nation’s previously untapped unconventional oil and gas reserves.

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