15 Jul 2010

High Court rules on gas field management

9:34 am on 15 July 2010

The High Court has ruled in favour of Shell and OMV in a long-running dispute over the joint venture management of the Pohokura gas field near Taranaki.

Todd Energy had sought $274 million in damages from its partners, arguing that by producing about 20% less gas each year, Shell and OMV substantially reduced competition in the gas market and held prices artificially high.

In his decision, Justice Dobson ruled the majority of the joint venture was entitled to set the field's rate of production in the way it did.

Todd Energy managing director Richard Tweedie says he is disappointed the High Court found against the company and it is still reviewing the judgement before deciding whether to appeal.

Since the wind-down of the Maui field was announced, Pohokura has become the most important source of gas for this country.

Both it and Maui have been subject to repeated lawsuits involving Todd and its partners.