press release

CNOOC and Gorgon Sign LNG Deal


This is news concerning ChevronTexaco but issued by someone other than ChevronTexaco and archived here for record purposes.

CANBERRA, Australia, Oct. 24, 2003 -- China National Offshore Oil Corp. and the Gorgon Venture Participants today signed an agreement which is expected to lead to one of the biggest LNG deals in the industry's history.

The agreement calls for the parties to place a significant volume of Gorgon LNG for use in the growing Chinese market.

The Agreement will be signed today in a ceremony in Canberra which coincides with a visit by China's President Hu Jintao.

Subject to the completion of formal contracts, CNOOC Limited will purchase a substantial equity stake in the Gorgon gas development, and its parent, CNOOC will arrange to purchase foundation volumes of LNG from Gorgon for use in China. CNOOC will also assist Gorgon to secure markets in China for a further designated amount of LNG.

Jay Johnson, Managing Director of ChevronTexaco Australia - the operator of the Gorgon Joint Venture - said the agreement with CNOOC is significant as it provides a basis to underpin the commercialisation of the Gorgon gas field.

"In addition, Gorgon's world class gas reserves make it well placed to meet demand in the growing Chinese energy market," Mr Johnson said.

CNOOC is already involved in two LNG receiving terminal projects in China, Guangdong and Fujian. Western Australia's sister state, Zhejiang, is one of several new locations identified for the expanding LNG trade in China's southern and eastern provinces.

CNOOC's President Fu Chengyu, accompanying the Chinese President on his visit to Australia, said that this deal strongly reinforced the ties of friendship between China and Australia and was a result of the good relations which had developed over the last few years.

"We look forward to becoming an active and constructive player in the Australian hydrocarbon business as a Gorgon participant," he said.

"CNOOC places great importance on the LNG business in China; gas is a significant growth contributor for CNOOC and securing supplies from Gorgon reinforces that strategy. We are also very conscious that trade at this level plays an important role in promoting stability in the Region."

The Gorgon development received in-principle approval last month from the Western Australian State Government for access to Barrow Island, and a State Agreement has been signed to facilitate the establishment of gas processing facilities on the island.

Mr Johnson said the Gorgon Joint Venture is focussed on developing the Gorgon gas field while protecting the conservation values of Barrow Island.

The Gorgon Joint Venture participants consist of ChevronTexaco (4/7th interest and operator), Shell (2/7th) and ExxonMobil (1/7th).

Updated: October 2003