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Papua LNG Project (Elk-Antelope gas discoveries)

In March 2014, Oil Search acquired a 22.835% interest in PRL 15, containing the Elk-Antelope gas discoveries in the onshore Gulf Province. As the largest undeveloped gas resource in PNG, with material exploration upside, it has the potential to underpin a second world-scale LNG development in PNG.

A comprehensive appraisal programme is underway, which will help delineate the size and structural extent of the Elk-Antelope gas resource. Initial results are encouraging and confirm the existence of a substantial resource base. While substantial work remains, Oil Search is confident that the Elk-Antelope field has sufficient resources to underpin at least one larger LNG train (which was the basis for the Company’s entry into PRL 15) and possibly two PNG LNG-sized trains.

In July 2015, a major milestone was reached when the PRL 15 Joint Venture selected the locations of key infrastructure sites for the Papua LNG Project. This followed the extensive evaluation of a large range of options and detailed discussions with the PNG Government, which has expressed strong support for the Project.

The PRL 15 Joint Venture has agreed on the following:

  • The LNG plant site will be located at Caution Bay, adjacent to the PNG LNG Project site. This will maximise the opportunity to pursue any potential synergies with the PNG LNG Project.
  • The upstream Central Processing Facility will be located in PRL 15, close to the Purari River.
  • The approximately 75 kilometre onshore and 265 kilometre offshore pipeline routes for the separate gas and condensate pipelines have been determined.

The selection of the final development concept, including the sizing and capacity of the facilities, is expected to take place in early 2016, once appraisal of the Elk-Antelope field has been completed and the resource size has been quantified. This development concept will then determine the final Basis of Design and subsequently Front End Engineering and Design.

The Papua LNG Project has the potential to have a similar impact on PNG’s Gross Domestic Product and export revenues as the PNG LNG Project. This would result in a significant boost to economic activity and opportunities for the people of PNG, particularly in the Gulf Province, where the wells, onshore pipeline and Central Processing Facility will be located. Progressing this project to the earliest practicable Final Investment Decision remains one of Oil Search’s highest priorities.

PRL 15 participants

Total (operator) 40.1%
InterOil 36.5%
Oil Search 22.8%
Minorities 0.5%